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Translated by Howard Eiland and Kevin McLaughlin 



Copyright © 1999 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College 
All rights reserved 

Printed in the United States of America 

First Harvard University Press paperback edition, 2002 

This work is a translation of Walter Benjamin, Das Axsagen-WfrA, edited by Rolf Tiedemann, copyright 
© 1982 by Suhrkamp Verlag; volume 5 of WalterBenjamin, Gesanmitc Sdiriften, prepared with the co- 
operation of Theodor W. Adomo and Gershom Scholem, edited by Rolf Tiedemaim and Hermann 
Schweppenhauser, copyright © 1972, 1974, 1977, 1982, 1985, 1989 by Suhrkamp Verlag. "Dialectics at a 
Standstill," by Rolf Tiedemann, was fust published in English by MIT Press, copyright © 1988 by the 
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. 

Publication of this book has been supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humani- 
ties, an independent federal agency. 

Publication of this book has also been aided by a grant from Inter Nationes, Bonn. 

Cover photo: Walter Benjamin, ca. 1932. Photographer unknown. Courtesy of the Theodor W. Adorno 
Archiv, Frankfurt am Main. 

Frontispiece: Passage Jouffroy, 1845-1847. Photographer unknown. Courtesy Musee Carnavalet, Paris. 
Photo copyright © Phototheque des Musees de la Ville de Paris. 

Vignettes: pages i, 1, 825, 891, 1074, Institut Francais d Architecture; page 27, Hans Meyer-Veden; 
page 869, Robert Doisneau. 

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data 

Benjamin, Walter, 1892-1940. 

[Passagen-Werk. English] 

The arcades project / Walter Benjamin; 
translated by Howard Eiland and Kevin McLaughlin; 
prepared on the basis of the German volume edited by Rolf Tedemann. 
p. cm. 

Includes index. 

ISBN 0-674-04326-X (cloth) 

ISBN 0-674-00802-2 (pbk.) 

I Tiedemann, Rolf. II. Title. 
PT2603.E455 P33513 1999 
944' .361081— dc21 99-27615 

Designed by Gwen Nefsky Frankfeldt 


Translators' Foreword ix 

Exposes 1 

"Paris, the Capital of the Nineteenth Century" (1935) 3 

"Paris, Capital of the Nineteenth Century" (1939) 14 

Convohites 27 

Overview 29 

First Sketches 827 
Early Drafts 

"Arcades" 871 

"The Arcades of Paris" 873 

"The Ring of Saturn" 885 


Expose of 1935, Early Version 893 

Materials for the Expose of 1 935 899 

Materials for "Arcades " 919 

"Dialectics at a Standstill," by Rolf Tiedemann 929 

"The Story of Old Benjamin," by Lisa Fittko 946 

Translators' Notes 955 

Guide to Names and lerms 1016 

Index 1055 


Shops in the Passage Vero-Dodat 34 

Glass roof and iron girders. Passage Vivienne 35 

The Passage des Panoramas 36 

A branch of La Belle jardiniere in Marseilles 47 

The Passage de l'»pera. 1822-1823 49 

Street scene in front of the Passage des Panoramas 50 

Au Bon Marche department store in Paris 59 

Le Pmt des planetes, by Grandville 65 

Fashionable courtesans wearing crinolines, by Honore Daumier 67 

Tools used by Haussmann's workers 134 

Interior of the Crystal Palace. London 159 

La Casse-tete-omanie, ou La Fureur du jour 164 

The Paris Stock Exchange, mid-nineteenth century 165 

The Palais de l'Industrie at die world exhibition of 1855 166 

Le Triomphe du kaleidoscope, ou /.<? tombeau du jeu chinois 169 

Exterior of the Crystal Palace. London 185 

Charles Baudelaire, by Nadar 229 

The Pont-Neuf, by Charles Meryon 232 

Theophile Gautier, by Nadar 242 

The sewers of Paris, by Nadar 413 

A Paris omnibus, by Honore Daumier 433 

A page of Benjamin's manuscript from Convolute N 457 

A gallery of the Palais-Royal 491 

A panorama under construction 529 

A diorama on the Rue de Bondy 534 

Self-portrait by Nadar 680 

Nadar in his balloon, by Honore Daumier 682 

The Origin of Painting 683 

Rue Transnonain, le 15 avril 1834, by Honore Daumier 717 

Honore Daumier, by Nadar 742 

Victor Hugo, by Etienne Carjat 747 

L'Artiste et I'mmateur du dix-neuvieme siecle 750 

L'Homme de I 'art dans I'embarras de son metier 751 

Alexandre Dumas pere, by Nadar 752 

L'Etrangomanie blamee, ou D'Etre Frangau il n'y a pas d'tffront 783 

Actualite, a caricature of the painter Gustave Courbet 792 

A barricade of the Paris Commune 794 

The Fourierist missionary Jean Journet, by Nadar 813 

Walter Benjamin consulting the Grand Dictionnaire universel 888 

Walter Benjamin at the card catalogue of the Bibliotheque Nationale 889 

The Passage Choiseul 927 

Translators' Foreword 

f [/flhe materials assembled in Volume 5 of Walter Benjamin's Gesammelte 
H Schriften, under the title Das Passagen-Werk (first published in 1982), repre- 
I sent research that Benjamin carried out, over a period of thirteen years, on 
the subject of the Paris arcades — les passages — which he considered the most 
important architectural form of the nineteenth century, and which he linked with 
a number of phenomena characteristic of that century's major and minor preoc- 
cupations. A glance at the overview preceding the "Convolutes" at the center of 
the work reveals the range of these phenomena, which extend from the literary 
and philosophical to the political, economic, and technological, with all sorts of 
intermediate relations. Benjamin's intention from the first, it would seem, was to 
grasp such diverse material under the general category of Urgeschichte, signifying 
the "primal history" of the nineteenth century. This was something that could be 
realized only indirectly, through "cunning": it was not the great men and cele- 
brated events of traditional historiography but rather the "refuse" and "detritus" 
of history, the half-concealed, variegated traces of the daily life of "the collective," 
that was to be the object of study, and with the aid of methods more akin — above 
all, in their dependence on chance — to the methods of the nineteenth-century 
collector of antiquities and curiosities, or indeed to the methods of the nine- 
teenth-century ragpicker, than to those of the modern historian. Not conceptual 
analysis but something like dream interpretation was the model. The nineteenth 
century was the collective dream which we, its heirs, were obliged to reenter, as 
patiently and minutely as possible, in order to follow out its ramifications and, 
finally, awaken from it. This, at any rate, was how it looked at the outset of the 
project, which wore a good many faces over time. 

Begun in 1927 as a planned collaboration for a newspaper article on the 
arcades, the project had quickly burgeoned under the influence of Surrealism, a 
movement toward which Benjamin always maintained a pronounced ambiva- 
lence. Before long, it was an essay he had in mind, "Pariser Passagen: Eine 
dialektische Feerie" (Paris Arcades: A Dialectical Fairyland), and then, a few 
years later, a book, Paris, die Hauptstadt des XIX. Jahrhunderts (Paris, the Capital 
of the Nineteenth Century). For some two-and-a-half years, at the end of the 
Twenties, having expressed his sense of alienation from contemporary German 
writers and his affinity with the French cultural milieu, Benjamin worked inter- 
mittently on reams of notes and sketches, producing one short essay, "Der 

Satumring oder Etwas vom Eisenbau" (The Ring of Saturn, or Some Remarks 
on Iron Construction), which is included here in the section "Early Drafts." A 
hiatus of about four years ensued, until, in 1934, Benjamin resumed work on the 
arcades with an eye to "new and far-reaching sociological perspectives." The 
scope of the undertaking, the volume of materials collected, was assuming epic 
proportions, and no less epic was the manifest interminability of the task, which 
Benjamin pursued in his usual fearless way — step by step, risking engulfment — 
beneath the ornamented vaulting of the reading room of the Bibliotheque Na- 
tionale in Paris. Already in a letter of 1930, he refers to The Arcades Project as "the 
theater of all my struggles and all my ideas." 

In 1935, at the request of his colleagues at the Institute of Social Research in 
New 'fork, Benjamin drew up an expose, or documentary synopsis, of the main 
lines of The Arcades Project; another expose, based largely on the first but more 
exclusively theoretical, was written in French, in 1939, in an attempt to interest 
an American sponsor. Aside from these remarkably concentrated essays, and the 
brief text "The Ring of Saturn," the entire Arcades complex (without definitive 
title, to be sure) remained in the form of several hundred notes and reflections of 
varying length, which Benjamin revised and grouped in sheafs, or "convolutes," 
according to a host of topics. Additionally, from the late Twenties on, it would 
appear, citations were incorporated into these materials — passages drawn mainly 
from an array of nineteenth-century sources, but also from the works of key 
contemporaries (Marcel Proust, Paul Valery, Louis Aragon, Andre Breton, Georg 
Simmel, Ernst Bloch, Siegfried Kracauer, Theodor Adorno). These proliferating 
individual passages, extracted from their original context like collectibles, were 
eventually set up to communicate among themselves, often in a rather subterra- 
nean manner. The organized masses of historical objects — the particular items of 
Benjamin's display (drafts and excerpts) — together give rise to "a world of secret 
affinities," and each separate article in the collection, each entry, was to constitute 
a "magic encyclopedia" of the epoch from which it derived. An image of that 
epoch. In the background of this theory of the historical image, constituent of a 
historical "mirror world," stands the idea of the monad — an idea given its most 
comprehensive formulation in the pages on origin in the prologue to Benjamin's 
book on German tragic drama, Ursprung des deutschen Trauerspiels (Origin of the 
German Trauerspiel) — and back of this the doctrine of the reflective medium, in 
its significance for the object, as expounded in Benjamin's 1919 dissertation, 
"Der Begrif f der Kunstkritik in der deutschen Romantik" (The Concept of Criti- 
cism in German Romanticism) . At bottom, a canon of (nonsensuous) similitude 
rules die conception of the Arcades. 

Was this conception realized? In the text we have before us, is the world of 
secret affinities in any sense perceptible? Can one even speak of a "world" in the 
case of a literary fragment? For, since the publication of the Passagen-Werk, it has 
become customary to regard the text which Benjamin himself usually called the 
Passagenarbeit, or just the Passagen, as at best a "torso," a monumental fragment 
or ruin, and at worst a mere notebook, which the author supposedly intended to 
mine for more extended discursive applications (such as the carefully outlined 
and possibly half-completed book on Baudelaire, which he worked on from 1937 
to 1939). Certainly, the project as a whole is unfinished; Benjamin abandoned 

work on it in the spring of 1940, when he was forced to flee Paris before the 
advancing German army. Did he leave behind anything more than a large-scale 
plan or prospectus? No, it is argued, The Arcades Project is just that: the blueprint 
for an unimaginably massive and labyrinthine architecture — a dream city, in 
effect. This argument is predicated on the classic distinction between research 
and application, Forschung and Darstellung (see, for example, entry N4a,5 in the 
"Convolutes"), a distinction which Benjamin himself invokes at times, as in a 
letter to Gershom Scholem of March 3, 1934, where he wonders about ways in 
which his research on the arcades might be put to use, or in a letter of May 3, 
1936, where he tells Scholem that not a syllable of the actual text (eigentlichen 
lext) of the Passagenarbeit exists yet. In another of his letters to Scholem of this 
period, he speaks of the future construction of a literary form for this text. Similar 
statements appear in letters to Adomo and others. Where The Arcades Project is 
concerned, then, we may distinguish between various stages of research, more or 
less advanced, but there is no question of a realized work. So runs the lament. 

Nevertheless, questions remain, not least as a consequence of the radical status 
of "study" in Benjamin's thinking (see the Kafka essay of 1934, or Convolute m 
of the Arcades, "Idleness"). For one thing, as we have indicated, many of the 
passages of reflection in the "Convolutes" section represent revisions of earlier 
drafts, notes, or letters. Why revise for a notebook? The fact that Benjamin also 
transferred masses of quotations from actual notebooks to the manuscript of the 
convolutes, and the elaborate organization of these cited materials in that manu- 
script (including the use of numerous epigraphs), might likewise bespeak a com- 
positional principle at work in the project, and not just an advanced stage of 
research. In fact, the montage form — with its philosophic play of distances, tran- 
sitions, and intersections, its perpetually shifting contexts and ironic juxtaposi- 
tions — had become a favorite device in Benjamin's later investigations; among 
his major works, we have examples of this in Einbahnstrasse (One- Way Street), 
Berliner Kindheit urn Neumehnhundert (A Berlin Childhood around 1900), "Uber 
den Begiiff der Geschichte" (On the Concept of History) , and "Zentralpark" 
(Central Park). What is distinctive about The Arcades Project — in Benjamin's 
mind, it always dwelt apart — is the working of quotations into the framework of 
montage, so much so that they eventually far outnumber the commentaries. If 
we now were to regard this ostensible patchwork as, de facto, a determinate 
literary form, one that has effectively constructed itself (that is, fragmented it- 
self), like the Journaux intimes of Baudelaire, then surely there would be sig- 
nificant repercussions for the direction and tempo of its reading, to say the least. 
The transcendence of the conventional book form would go together, in this 
case, with the blasting apart of pragmatic historicism — grounded, as this always 
is, on the premise of a continuous and homogeneous temporality. Citation and 
commentary might then be perceived as intersecting at a thousand different 
angles, setting up vibrations across the epochs of recent history, so as to effect 
"the cracking open of natural teleology." And all this would unfold through the 
medium of hints or "blinks" — a discontinuous presentation deliberately opposed 
to traditional modes of argument. At any rate, it seems undeniable that despite 
the informal, epistolary announcements of a "book" in the works, an eigentlichen 
Buch, the research project had become an end in itself. 

Of course, many readers will concur with the German editor of the Passagen- 
Werk, Rolf Tiedemann, when he speaks, in his essay "Dialectics at a Standstill" 
(first published as the introduction to the German edition, and reproduced here 
in translation), of the "oppressive chunks of quotations" filling its pages. Part of 
Benjamin's purpose was to document as concretely as possible, and thus lend a 
"heightened graphicness" to, the scene of revolutionary change that was the 
nineteenth century. At issue was what he called the "commodifi cation of things." 
He was interested in the unsettling effects of incipient high capitalism on the most 
intimate areas of life and work — especially as reflected in the work of art (its 
composition, its dissemination, its reception). In this "projection of the historical 
into the intimate," it was a matter not of demonstrating any straightforward 
cultural "decline," but rather of bringing to light an uncanny sense of crisis and of 
security, of crisis in security. Particularly from the perspective of the nineteenth- 
century domestic interior, which Benjamin likens to the inside of a mollusk's 
shell, things were coming to seem more entirely material than ever and, at the 
same time, more spectral and estranged. In the society at large (and in Baude- 
laire's writing par excellence), an unflinching realism was cultivated alongside a 
rhapsodic idealism. This essentially ambiguous situation — one could call it, using 
the term favored by a number of the writers studied in llie Arcades Project, 
"phantasmagorical" — sets the tone for Benjamin's deployment of motifs, for his 
recurrent topographies, his mobile cast of characters, his gallery of types. For 
example, these nineteenth-century types (flaneur, collector, and gambler head the 
list) generally constitute figures in the middle — that is, figures residing within 
as well as outside the marketplace, between the worlds of money and magic — 
figures on the threshold. Here, furthermore, in the wakening to crisis (crisis 
masked by habitual complacency), was the link to present-day concerns. Not the 
least cunning aspect of this historical awakening — which is, at the same time, an 
awakening to myth — was the critical role assigned to humor, sometimes humor 
of an infernal kind. This was one way in which the documentary and the artistic, 
the sociological and the theological, were to meet head-on. 

To speak of awakening was to speak of the "afterlife of works," something 
brought to pass through the medium of the "dialectical image." The latter is 
Benjamin's central term, in 'Ine Arcades Project, for the historical object of inter- 
pretation: that which, under the divinatory gaze of the collector, is taken up into 
the collector's own particular time and place, thereby throwing a pointed light on 
what has been. Welcomed into a present moment that seems to be waiting just 
for it — "actualized," as Benjamin likes to say — the moment from the past comes 
alive as never before. In this way, the "now" is itself experienced as preformed in 
the "then," as its distillation — thus the leading motif of "precursors" in the text. 
The historical object is reborn as such into a present day capable of receiving it, 
of suddenly "recognizing" it. This is the famous "now of recognizability" (Jetzt 
der Erkennbarkeit) , which has the character of a lightning flash. In the dusty, 
cluttered corridors of the arcades, where street and interior are one, historical 
time is broken up into kaleidoscopic distractions and momentary come-ons, 
myriad displays of ephemera, thresholds for the passage of what Gerard de 
Nerval (in Amelia) calls "the ghosts of material things." Here, at a distance from 
what is normally meant by "progress," is the Mr-historical, collective redemption 
of lost time, of the times embedded in the spaces of things. 

The German edition of the Passagen- Werk contains — besides the two exposes we 
have mentioned, the long series of convolutes that follow, the "Erste Notizen" 
(here translated as "First Sketches") and "Friihe Entwiirfe" ("Early Drafts") at the 
end — a wealth of supplementary material relating to the genesis of Hie A rcades 
Project. From this textual-critical apparatus, drawn on for the Translators' Notes, 
we have extracted three additional sets of preliminary drafts and notations and 
translated them in the Addenda; we have also reproduced the introduction by the 
German editor, Rolf Tiedemann, as well as an account of Benjamin's last days 
written by Lisa Fittko and printed in the original English at the end of the 
German edition. Omitted from our volume are some 100 pages of excerpts from 
letters to and from Benjamin, documenting the growth of the project (the major- 
ity of these letters appear elsewhere in English) ; a partial bibliography, compiled 
by Tiedemann, of 850 works cited in the "Convolutes"; and, finally, precise 
descriptions of Benjamin's manuscripts and manuscript variants (see translators' 
initial note to the "Convolutes"). In an effort to respect the unique constitution of 
these manuscripts, we have adopted Tiedemann's practice of using angle brack- 
ets to indicate editorial insertions into the text. 

A salient feature of the German edition of Benjamin's "Convolutes" 
("Aufzeichnungen und Materialien") is the use of two different typefaces: a larger 
one for his reflections in German and a smaller one for his numerous citations in 
French and German. According to Tiedemann's introduction, the larger type was 
used for entries containing significant commentary by Benjamin. (In "First 
Sketches," the two different typefaces are used to demarcate canceled passages.) 
This typographic distinction, designed no doubt for the convenience of readers, 
although it is without textual basis in Benjamin's manuscript, has been main- 
tained in the English translation. We have chosen, however, to use typefaces 
differing in style rather than in size, so as to avoid the hierarchical implication of 
the German edition (the privileging of Benjamin's reflections over his citations, 
and, in general, of German over French). What Benjamin seems to have con- 
ceived was a dialectical relation — a formal and thematic interfusion of citation 
and commentary. It is an open, societary relation, as in the protocol to the 
imaginary world inn (itself an unacknowledged citation from Baudelaire's 
Paradis artificiels) mentioned in the "Convolutes" atJ75,2. 

As for the bilingual character of the text as a whole, this has been, if not 
entirely eliminated in the English-language edition, then necessarily reduced to 
merely the citation of the original titles of Benjamin's sources. (Previously pub- 
lished translations of these sources have been used, and duly noted, wherever 
possible; where two or more published translations of a passage are available, we 
have tried to choose the one best suited to Benjamin's context.) In most cases we 
have regularized the citation of year and place of book publication, as well as 
volume and issue number of periodicals; bits of information, such as first names, 
have occasionally been supplied in angle brackets. Otherwise, Benjamin's irregu- 
lar if relatively scrupulous editorial practices have been preserved. 

As a further aid to readers, the English-language edition of Hie Arcades Project 
includes an extensive if not exhaustive "Guide to Names and Terms"; translators' 
notes intended to help contextualize Benjamin's citations and reflections; and 
cross-references serving to link particular items in the "First Sketches" and "Early 
Drafts" to corresponding entries in the "Convolutes." 

Translation duties for this edition were divided as follows: Kevin McLaughlin 
translated the Expose of 1939 and the previously untranslated French passages 
in Convolutes A-C, F, H, K, M (second half), O, Qjl, and p-r. Howard Eiland 
translated Benjamin's German throughout and was responsible for previously 
untranslated material in Convolutes D, E, G, I ,J, L, M (first half), N, P, and m, as 
well as for the Translators' Foreword. 

In conclusion, a word about the translation oiKonvolut. As used for the grouping 
of the thirty-six alphabetized sections of the Passagen manuscript, this term, it 
would seem, derives not from Benjamin himself but from his friend Adorno (this 
according to a communication from Rolf Tiedemann, who studied with 
Adorno). It was Adomo who first sifted through the manuscript of the "Aufzeich- 
nungen und Materialien," as Tiedemann later called it, after it had been hidden 
away by Georges Bataille in the Bibliotheque Nationale de France during the 
Second World War and then retrieved and delivered to New York at the end of 
1947. In Germany, the term Konvolut has a common philological application: it 
refers to a larger or smaller assemblage — literally, a bundle — of manuscripts or 
printed materials that belong together. The noun "convolute" in English means 
"something of a convoluted form." We have chosen it as the translation of the 
German term over a number of other possibilities, the most prominent being 
"folder," "file," and "sheaf." The problem with these more common English 
terms is that each carries inappropriate connotations, whether of office supplies, 
computerese, agriculture, or archery. "Convolute" is strange, at least on first 
acquaintance, but so is Benjamin's project and its principle of sectioning. Aside 
from its desirable closeness to the German rubric, which, we have suggested, is 
both philologically and historically legitimated, it remains the most precise and 
most evocative term for designating the elaborately intertwined collections of 
"notes and materials" that make up the central division of this most various and 
colorful of Benjaminian texts. 

The translators are grateful to the National Endowment for the Humanities for a 
two-year grant in support of the translation, and to the Dean of the Graduate 
School of Brown University, Peder Estrup, for a generous publication subven- 
tion. Special thanks are due Michael W. Jennings for checking the entire manu- 
script of the translation and making many valuable suggestions. We are further 
indebted to Wmfried Menninghaus and Susan Bernstein for reading portions of 
the manuscript and offering excellent advice. Rolf Tiedemann kindly and 
promptly answered our inquiries concerning specific problems. The reviewers 
enlisted by Harvard University Press to evaluate the translation also provided 
much help with some of the more difficult passages. Other scholars who gener- 
ously provided bibliographic information are named in the relevant Translators' 
Notes. Our work has greatly benefited at the end from the resourceful, vigilant 
editing of Maria Ascher and at every stage from the foresight and discerning 
judgment of Lindsay Waters. 

Paris, the Capital of the Nineteenth Century 

< Expose of 1935 > 

The waters are blue, the plants pink; the evening is sweet to 
look on; 

One goes for a walk; the grandes dames go for a walk; behind 
them stroll the petites dames. 

— Nguyen Trong Hkp, Paris, capitate de la France: Recweil de vers 
(Hanoi, 1897), poem 25 

I. Fourier, or the Arcades 

The magic columns of these palaces 
Show to the amateur on all sides, 
In the objects their porticos display, 
That industry is the rival of the arts. 

— Nouveaux Tableaux de Paris (Paris, 1828), vol. 1, p. 27 

Most of the Paris arcades come into being in the decade and a half after 1822. 
The first condition for their emergence is the boom in the textile trade. Magasins 
de nouveautes, the first establishments to keep large stocks of merchandise on the 
premises, make their appearance. 1 They are the forerunners of department 
stores. This was the period of which Balzac wrote: "The great poem of display 
chants its stanzas of color from the Church of the Madeleine to the Porte Saint- 
Denis." 2 The arcades are a center of commerce in luxury items. In fitting them 
out, art enters the service of the merchant. Contemporaries never tire of admir- 
ing them, and for a long time they remain a drawing point for foreigners. An 
Illustrated Guide to Paris says: "These arcades, a recent invention of industrial 
luxury, are glass-roofed, marble-paneled corridors extending through whole 
blocks of buildings, whose owners have joined together for such enterprises. 
Lining both sides of these corridors, which get their light from above, are the 
most elegant shops, so that the passage is a city, a world in miniature." The 
arcades are the scene of the first gas lighting. 

The second condition for the emergence of the arcades is the beginning of iron 
construction. The Empire saw in this technology a contribution to the revival of 

architecture in the classical Greek sense The architectural theorist Boetticher 
expresses the general view of the matter when he says that, "with regard to the 
art forms of the new system, the formal principle of the Hellenic mode" must 
come to prevail. 3 Empire is the style of revolutionary terrorism, for which the 
state is an end in itself. Just as Napoleon failed to understand the functional 
nature of the state as an instrument of domination by the bourgeois class, so the 
architects of his time failed to understand the functional nature of iron, with 
which the constructive principle begins its domination of architecture. These 
architects design supports resembling Pompeian columns, and factories that imi- 
tate residential houses, just as later the first railroad stations will be modeled on 
chalets. "Construction plays the role of the subconscious." 1 Nevertheless, the 
concept of engineer, which dates from the revolutionary wars, starts to gain 
ground, and the rivalry begins between builder and decorator, Ecole Polytech- 
nique and Ecole des Beaux-Arts. 

For the first time in the history of architecture, an artificial building material 
appears: iron. It undergoes an evolution whose tempo will accelerate in the 
course of the century. This development enters a decisive new phase when it 
becomes clear that the locomotive — on which experiments had been conducted 
since the end of the 1820s — is compatible only with iron tracks. The rail be- 
comes the first prefabricated iron component, the precursor of the girder. Iron is 
avoided in home construction but used in arcades, exhibition halls, train sta- 
tions — buildings that serve transitory purposes. At the same time, the range of 
architectural applications for glass expands, although the social prerequisites for 
its widened application as building material will come to the fore only a hundred 
years later. In Scheerbart's Glusarchitektur (1914), it still appears in the context of 
Utopia/ 1 

Each epoch dreams the one to follow. 
— Michelct, "Avenir! Avenir!" 6 

Corresponding to the form of the new means of production, which in the begin- 
ning is still ruled by the form of the old (Marx), are images in the collective 
consciousness in which the new is permeated with the old. These images are wish 
images; in them the collective seeks both to overcome and to transfigure the 
immaturity of the social product and the inadequacies in the social organization 
of production. At the same time, what emerges in these wish images is the 
resolute effort to distance oneself from all that is antiquated — which includes, 
however, the recent past These tendencies deflect the imagination (which is 
given impetus by the new) back upon the primal past. In the dream in which each 
epoch entertains images of its successor, the latter appears wedded to elements of 
primal history <Urgeschichte> — that is, to elements of a classless society. And the 
experiences of such a society — as stored in the unconscious of the collective — 
engender, through interpenetration with what is new, the Utopia that has left its 

trace in a thousand configurations of life, from enduring edifices to passing 

These relations are discernible in the Utopia conceived by Fourier. Its secret cue 
is the advent of machines. But this fact is not directly expressed in the Fourierist 
literature, which takes as its point of departure the amorality of the business 
world and the false morality enlisted in its service. The phalanstery is designed to 
restore human beings to relationships in which morality becomes superfluous. 
The highly complicated organization of the phalanstery appears as machinery. 
The meshing of the passions, the intricate collaboration of passions mecanutes with 
the passion cabalute, is a primitive contrivance formed — on analogy with the 
machine — from materials of psychology. This mechanism made of men pro- 
duces the land of milk and honey, the primeval wish symbol that Fourier's Utopia 
has filled with new life. 

Fourier saw, in the arcades, the architectural canon of the phalanstery. Their 
reactionary metamorphosis with him is characteristic: whereas they originally 
serve commercial ends, they become, for him, places of habitation. The phalan- 
stery becomes a city of arcades. Fourier establishes, in the Empire's austere world 
of forms, the colorful idyll of Biedermeier. Its brilliance persists, however faded, 
up through Zola, who takes up Fourier's ideas in his book Iravail, just as he bids 
farewell to the arcades in his Therese Raquin. — Marx came to the defense of 
Fourier in his critique of Carl Griin, emphasizing the former's "colossal concep- 
tion of man." 7 He also directed attention to Fourier's humor. In fact, Jean Paul, in 
his Levana, is as closely allied to Fourier the pedagogue as Scheerbart, in his 
Glass Architecture, is to Fourier the Utopian. 8 

II. Daguerre, or the Panoramas 

Sun, look out for yourself! 

—A.J. Wiertz, Oeuvres litte'raires (Paris, 1870), p. 374 

Just as architecture, with the first appearance of iron construction, begins to 
outgrow art, so does painting, in its turn, with the first appearance of the pano- 
ramas. The high point in the diffusion of panoramas coincides with the introduc- 
tion of arcades. One sought tirelessly, through technical devices, to make 
panoramas the scenes of a perfect imitation of nature. An attempt was made to 
reproduce the changing daylight in the landscape, the rising of the moon, the 
rush of waterfalls. <Jacques-Louis> David counsels his pupils to draw from nature 
as it is shown in panoramas. In their attempt to produce deceptively lifelike 
changes in represented nature, the panoramas prepare the way not only for 
photography but for <silent> film and sound film. 

Contemporary with the panoramas is a panoramic literature. Le Livre des 
cent-et-un (The Book of a Hundred-and-One], Les Francais peints par eux-memes 
[The French Painted by Themselves], Le Diable a Paris [The Devil in Paris], and 
La Grande Jille [The Big City] belong to this. These books prepare die belletristic 

collaboration for which Girardin, in the 1830s, will create a home in the feuille- 
ton. They consist of individual sketches, whose anecdotal form corresponds to 
the panoramas' plastically arranged foreground, and whose informational base 
corresponds to their painted background. This literature is also socially pano- 
ramic. For the last time, the worker appears, isolated from his class, as part of the 
setting in an idyll. 

Announcing an upheaval in the relation of art to technology, panoramas are at 
the same time an expression of a new attitude toward life. The city dweller, 
whose political supremacy over the provinces is attested many times in the 
course of the century, attempts to bring the countryside into town. In panoramas, 
die city opens out, becoming landscape — as it will do later, in subder fashion, for 
the flaneurs. Daguerre is a student of the panorama painter Prevost, whose estab- 
lishment is located in the Passage des Panoramas. Description of the panoramas 
of Prevost and Daguerre. In 1839 Daguerre's panorama burns down. In the same 
year, he announces the invention of the daguerreotype. 

<Francois> Arago presents photography in a speech to die National Assembly. 
He assigns it a place in die history of technology and prophesies its scientific 
applications. On the other side, artists begin to debate its artistic value. Photogra- 
phy leads to the extinction of the great profession of portrait miniaturist. This 
happens not just for economic reasons. The early photograph was artistically 
superior to the miniature portrait. The technical grounds for this advantage lie in 
the long exposure time, which requires of a subject the highest concentration; the 
social grounds for it lie in the fact that the first photographers belonged to the 
avant-garde, from which most of their clientele came. Nadar's superiority to his 
colleagues is shown by his attempt to take photographs in the Paris sewer system: 
for die first time, die lens was deemed capable of making discoveries. Its importance 
becomes still greater as, in view of the new teclmological and social reality, the 
subjective strain in pictorial and graphic information is called into question. 

The world exhibition of 1855 offers for the first time a special display called 
"Photography." In the same year, Wiertz publishes his great article on photogra- 
phy, in which he defines its task as the philosophical enlightenment of painting. 9 
This "enlightenment" is understood, as his own paintings show, in a political 
sense. Wiertz can be characterized as the first to demand, if not actually foresee, 
the use of photographic montage for political agitation. With the increasing 
scope of communications and transport, the informational value of painting di- 
minishes. In reaction to photography, painting begins to stress the elements of 
color in the picture. By the time Impressionism yields to Cubism, painting has 
created for itself a broader domain into which, for the time being, photography 
cannot follow. For its part, photography gready extends the sphere of commodity 
exchange, from mid-century onward, by flooding the market widi coundess im- 
ages of figures, landscapes, and events which had previously been available 
either not at all or only as pictures for individual customers. To increase turnover, 
it renewed its subject matter through modish variations in camera technique — 
innovations diat will detennine the subsequent history of photography. 

III. Grandville, or the World Exhibitions 

Yes, when all the world from Paris to China 

Pays heed to your doctrine, O divine Saint-Simon, 

The glorious Golden Age will be reborn. 

Rivers will flow with chocolate and tea, 

Sheep roasted whole will frisk on the plain, 

And sauteed pike will swim in the Seine. 

Fricasseed spinach will grow on the ground, 

Garnished with crushed fried croutons; 

The trees will bring forth apple compotes, 

And farmers will harvest boots and coats. 

It will snow wine, it will rain chickens, 

And ducks cooked with turnips will fall from the sky. 

— Langle and \fonderburcb, Louii-Bronze et le Saint-Simonien 
(Theatre du Palais-Royal, February 27, 1832) 1 * 

World exhibitions are places of pilgrimage to the commodity fetish. "Europe is 
off to view the merchandise," says Taine in 1855. 11 The world exhibitions are 
preceded by national exhibitions of industry, the first of which takes place on the 
Champ de Mars in 1798. It arises from the wish "to entertain the working classes, 
and it becomes for them a festival of emancipation." 12 The worker occupies the 
foreground, as customer. The framework of the entertainment industry has not 
yet taken shape; the popular festival provides this. Chaptal's speech on industry 
opens the 1798 exhibition. — The Saint-Simonians, who envision the industriali- 
zation of the earth, take up the idea of world exhibitions. Chevalier, the 
first authority in the new field, is a student of Enfantin and editor of the Saint- 
Simonian newspaper Le Globe. The Saint-Simonians anticipated the development 
of the global economy, but not the class struggle. Next to their active participa- 
tion in industrial and commercial enterprises around the middle of the century 
stands their helplessness on all questions concerning the proletariat. 

World exhibitions glorify the exchange value of the commodity. They create a 
framework in which its use value recedes into the background. They open a 
phantasmagoria which a person enters in order to be distracted. The entertain- 
ment industry makes this easier by elevating the person to the level of the 
commodity. He surrenders to its manipulations while enjoying his alienation 
from himself and others. — The enthronement of the commodity, with its luster 
of distraction, is the secret theme of Grandville's art. This is consistent with the 
split between Utopian and cynical elements in his work. Its ingenuity in repre- 
senting inanimate objects corresponds to what Marx calls the "theological nice- 
ties" of the commodity. 23 They are manifest clearly in the specialite — a category of 
goods which appears at this time in the luxuries industry. Under Grandville's 
pencil, the whole of nature is transformed into specialties. He presents them in 
the same spirit in which the advertisement (the term reclame also originates at this 
point) begins to present its articles. He ends in madness. 

Fashion: "Madam Death! Madam Death!" 

— Leopardi, "Dialogue between Fashion and Death" 1 ' 1 

World exhibitions propagate the universe of commodities. Grandville's fantasies 
confer a commodity character on the universe. They modernize it. Saturn's ring 
becomes a cast-iron balcony on which the inhabitants of Saturn take the evening 
air. The literary counterpart to this graphic Utopia is found in the books of the 
Fourierist naturalist Toussenel. — Fashion prescribes the ritual according to which 
the commodity fetish demands to be worshipped. Grandville extends the author- 
ity of fashion to objects of everyday use, as well as to the cosmos. In taking it to 
an extreme, he reveals its nature. Fashion stands in opposition to the organic. It 
couples the living body to the inorganic world. To the living, it defends the rights 
of the corpse. The fetishism that succumbs to the sex appeal of the inorganic is its 
vital nerve. The cult of the commodity presses such fetishism into its service. 

For the Paris world exhibition of 1867, Victor Hugo issues a manifesto: 'To the 
Peoples of Europe." Earlier, and more unequivocally, their interests had been 
championed by delegations of French workers, of which the first had been sent to 
the London world exhibition of 1851 and the second, numbering 750 delegates, 
to that of 1862. The latter delegation was of indirect importance for Marx's 
founding of the International Workingmen's Association. — The phantasmagoria 
of capitalist culture attains its most radiant unfolding in the world exhibition of 
1867. The Second Empire is at the height of its power. Paris is acknowledged as 
the capital of luxury and fashion. Offenbach sets the rhythm of Parisian life. The 
operetta is the ironic Utopia of an enduring reign of capital. 

IV. Louis Philippe, or the Interior 

The head . . . 

On the night table, like a ranunculus, 

—Baudelaire, "Une Martyre" 15 

Under Louis Philippe, the private individual makes his entrance on the stage of 
history. The expansion of the democratic apparatus through a new electoral law 
coincides with the parliamentary corruption organized by Guizot. Under cover 
of this corruption, the ruling class makes history; that is, it pursues its affairs. It 
furthers railway construction in order to improve its stock holdings. It promotes 
the reign of Louis Philippe as that of the private individual managing his affairs. 
With the July Revolution, the bourgeoisie realized the goals of 1789 (Marx). 

For the private individual, the place of dwelling is for the first time opposed to 
the place of work. The former constitutes itself as the interior. Its complement is 
the office. The private individual, who in the office has to deal with reality, needs 
the domestic interior to sustain him in his illusions. This necessity is all the more 
pressing since he has no intention of allowing his commercial considerations to 

impinge on social ones. In the formation of his private environment, both are 
kept out. From this arise the phantasmagorias of the interior — which, for the 
private man, represents the universe. In the interior, he brings together the far 
away and the long ago. His living room is a box in the theater of the world. 

Excursus on Jugendstil. The shattering of the interior occurs via Jugendstil 
around the turn of the century. Of course, according to its own ideology, the 
Jugendstil movement seems to bring with it the consummation of the interior. 
The transfiguration of the solitary soul appears to be its goal. Individualism is its 
theory. With van de Velde, the house becomes an expression of the personality. 
Ornament is to this house what the signature is to a painting. But the real 
meaning of Jugendstil is not expressed in this ideology. It represents the last 
attempted sortie of an art besieged in its ivory tower by technology. This attempt 
mobilizes all the reserves of inwardness. They find their expression in the medi- 
umistic language of the line, in the flower as symbol of a naked vegetal nature 
confronted by the technologically armed world. The new elements of iron con- 
struction — girder forms — preoccupy Jugendstil. In ornament, it endeavors to win 
back these forms for art. Concrete presents it with new possibilities for plastic 
creation in architecture. Around this time, the real gravitational center of living 
space shifts to the office. The irreal center makes its place in the home. The 
consequences of Jugendstil are depicted in Ibsen's Master Builder: the attempt by 
the individual, on the strength of his inwardness, to vje with technology leads to 
his downfall. 

I believe ... in my soul: the Thing. 

— LeonDeubel, Oeuvres (Paris, 1929), p. 193 

The interior is the asylum of art. The collector is the true resident of the interior. 
He makes his concern the transfiguration of things. To him falls the Sisyphean 
task of divesting things of their commodity character by taking possession of 
them. But he bestows on them only connoisseur value, rather than use value. 
The collector dreams his way not only into a distant or bygone world but also 
into a better one — one in which, to be sure, human beings are no better provided 
with what they need than in the everyday world, but in which things are freed 
from the drudgery of being useful. 

The interior is not just the universe but also the etui of the private individual. 
To dwell means to leave traces. In the interior, these are accentuated. Coverlets 
and antimacassars, cases and containers are devised in abundance; in these, the 
traces of the most ordinary objects of use are imprinted. In just the same way, the 
traces of the inhabitant are imprinted in the interior. Enter the detective story, 
which pursues these traces. Poe, in his "Philosophy of Furniture" as well as in his 
detective fiction, shows himself to be the first physiognomist of the domestic 
interior. The criminals in early detective novels are neither gentlemen nor 
apaches, but private citizens of the middle class. 

V. Baudelaire, or the Streets of Paris 

Everything becomes an allegory for me. 
— Baudelaire, "Le Cygne" 1(i 

Baudelaire's genius, which is nourished on melancholy, is an allegorical genius. 
For the first time, with Baudelaire, Paris becomes the subject of lyric poetry. This 
poetry is no hymn to the homeland; rather, the gaze of the allegorist, as it falls on 
the city, is the gaze of the alienated man. It is the gaze of the flaneur, whose way 
of life still conceals behind a mitigating nimbus the coming desolation of the 
big-city dweller. The flaneur still stands on the threshold — of the metropolis as of 
the middle class. Neither has him in its power yet. In neither is he at home. He 
seeks refuge in the crowd. Early contributions to a physiognomies of the crowd 
are found in Engels and Poe. The crowd is the veil through which the familiar 
city beckons to the flaneur as phantasmagoria — now a landscape, now a room. 
Both become elements of the department store, which makes use of flanerie itself 
to sell goods. The department store is the last promenade for the flaneur. 

In the flaneur, the intelligentsia sets foot in the marketplace — ostensibly to look 
around, but in truth to find a buyer. In this intermediate stage, in which it still has 
patrons but is already beginning to familiarize itself with the market, it appears as 
the boheme. To the uncertainty of its economic position corresponds the uncer- 
tainty of its political function. The latter is manifest most clearly in the profes- 
sional conspirators, who all belong to the boheme. Their initial field of activity is 
the army; later it becomes the petty bourgeoisie, occasionally the proletariat. 
Nevertheless, this group views the true leaders of the proletariat as its adversary. 
The Communist Manifesto brings their political existence to an end. Baudelaire's 
poetry draws its strength from the rebellious pathos of this group. He sides with 
the asocial. He realizes his only sexual communion with a whore. 

Easy the way that leads into Avernus. 
— Virgil, The Aeneid 17 

It is the unique provision of Baudelaire's poetry that the image of woman and 
the image of death intermingle in a third: that of Paris. The Paris of his poems is 
a sunken city, and more submarine than subterranean. The chthonic elements of 
the city — its topographic formations, the old abandoned bed of the Seine — have 
evidently found in him a mold. Decisive for Baudelaire in the "death-fraught 
idyll" of the city, however, is a social, a modern substrate. The modern is a 
principal accent of his poetry. As spleen, it fractures the ideal ("Spleen et ideal"). 
But precisely modernity is always citing primal history. Here, this occurs 
through the ambiguity peculiar to the social relations and products of this 
epoch. Ambiguity is the appearance of dialectic in images, the law of dialectics at 
a standstill. This standstill is Utopia and the dialectical image, therefore, dream 
image. Such an image is afforded by the commodity per se: as fetish. Such an 
Linage is presented by the arcades, which are house no less than street. Such 
an image is the prostitute — seller and sold in one. 

I travel in order to get to know my geography. 

— Note of a madman, in Marcel Reja, L'Art chez les foiis (Paris, 1907), p. 131 

The last poem of Les Fleurs du mal; "Le Voyage." "Death, old admiral, up anchor 
now." The last journey of the flaneur: death. Its destination: the new. "Deep in 
the Unknown to find the new/"'* Newness is a quality independent of the use 
value of the commodity. It is the origin of the semblance that belongs 
inalienably to images produced by the collective unconscious. It is the quintes- 
sence of that false consciousness whose indefatigable agent is fashion. This sem- 
blance of the new is reflected, like one mirror in another, in the semblance of the 
ever recurrent. The product of this reflection is the phantasmagoria of "cultural 
history," in which the bourgeoisie enjoys its false consciousness to the full. The 
art that begins to doubt its task and ceases to be "inseparable from < . . . > utility" 
(Baudelaire) 13 must make novelty into its highest value. The arbiter novarum rerum 
for such an art becomes the snob. He is to art what the dandy is to fashion.— Just 
as in the seventeenth century it is allegory that becomes the canon of dialectical 
images, in the nineteenth century it is novelty. Newspapers flourish, along with 
magasins de nouveautes. The press organizes the market in spiritual values, in 
which at first there is a boom. Nonconformists rebel against consigning art to the 
marketplace. They rally round the banner of I 'art pour I 'art. From this watchword 
derives the conception of die "total work of art" — the Gesamtkunstwerk — which 
would seal art off from the developments of technology. The solemn rite with 
which it is celebrated is the pendant to the distraction that transfigures the com- 
modity. Both abstract from the social existence of human beings. Baudelaire 
succumbs to the rage for Wagner. 

VI. Haussmann, or the Barricades 

I venerate the Beautiful, the Good, and all things great; 
Beautiful nature, on which great art rests — 
How it enchants the ear and charms the eye! 
I love spring in blossom: women and roses. 

— Baron Haussmann, Confession i'un lion deventi vieux' M 

The flowery realm of decorations, 
The charm of landscape, of architecture, 
And all the effect of scenery rest 
Solely on the law of perspective. 

— Franz Bolile, Tfieater-Catechistmis (Munich), p. 74 

Haussmann's ideal in city planning consisted of long perspectives down broad 
straight thoroughfares. Such an ideal corresponds to the tendency — common in 
the nineteenth century — to ennoble technological necessities through artistic 
ends. The institutions of the bourgeoisie's worldly and spiritual dominance were 
to find their apotheosis within the framework of the boulevards. Before their 
completion, boulevards were draped across with canvas and unveiled like monu- 

ments. — Haussmann's activity is linked to Napoleonic imperialism. Louis 
Napoleon promotes investment capital, and Paris experiences a rash of specula- 
tion. Trading on the stock exchange displaces the forms of gambling handed 
down from feudal society. The phantasmagorias of space to which the flaneur 
devotes himself find a counterpart in the phantasmagorias of time to which the 
gambler is addicted. Gambling converts time into a narcotic. <Paul> Lafargue 
explains gambling as an imitation in miniature of the mysteries of economic 
fluctuation. 21 The expropriations carried out under Haussmann call forth a wave 
of fraudulent speculation. The rulings of the Court of Cassation, which are 
inspired by the bourgeois and Orleanist opposition, increase the financial risks of 

Haussmann tries to shore up his dictatorship by placing Paris under an emer- 
gency regime. In 1864, in a speech before the National Assembly, he vents his 
hatred of the rootless urban population, which keeps increasing as a result of his 
projects. Rising rents drive the proletariat into the suburbs. The quartiers of Paris 
in this way lose their distinctive physiognomy. The "red belt" forms. Haussmann 
gave himself the title of "demolition artist," artiste demoluseur. He viewed his 
work as a calling, and emphasizes this in his memoirs. Meanwhile he estranges 
the Parisians from their city. They no longer feel at home there, and start to 
become conscious of the inhuman character of the metropolis. Maxime Du 
Camp's monumental work Paris owes its inception to this consciousness. 22 The 
Jere'miades d'un Haussmannise give it the form of a biblical lament. 23 

The true goal of Haussmann's projects was to secure the city against civil war. 
He wanted to make the erection of barricades in Paris impossible for all time. 
With the same end in mind, Louis Philippe had already introduced wooden 
paving. Nonetheless, barricades played a role in the February Revolution. Engels 
studies the tactics of barricade fighting. 21 Haussmann seeks to neutralize these 
tactics on two fronts. Widening the streets is designed to make the erection of 
barricades impossible, and new streets are to furnish the shortest route between 
the barracks and the workers' districts. Contemporaries christen the operation 
"strategic embellishment." 

Reveal to these depraved, 
O Republic, by foiling their plots, 
Your great Medusa face 
Ringed by red lightning. 

— Workers' song from about 1850, in Adolf Stalir, ^wei 
Monate in Pans (Oldenburg, 1851), vol. 2, p. 199 25 

The barricade is resurrected during the Commune. It is stronger and better 
secured than ever. It stretches across the great boulevards, often reaching a height 
of two stories, and shields the trenches behind it. Just as the Communist Manifesto 
ends the age of professional conspirators, so the Commune puts an end to the 
phantasmagoria holding sway over the early years of the proletariat. It dispels the 
illusion that the task of the proletarian revolution is to complete the work of 1789 

hand in hand with the bourgeoisie. This illusion dominates the period 1831- 
1 871, from the Lyons uprising to the Commune. The bourgeoisie never shared in 
this error. Its battle against the social rights of the proletariat dates back to the 
great Revolution, and converges with the philanthropic movement that gives it 
cover and that is in its heyday under Napoleon III. Under his reign, this move- 
ment's monumental work appears: Le Play's Ouwiers europeens [European Work- 
ers] . 36 Side by side with the concealed position of philanthropy, the bourgeoisie 
has always maintained openly the position of class warfare. 2 ' As early as 1831 , in 
the Journal des debats, it acknowledges that "every manufacturer lives in his 
factory like a plantation owner among his slaves." If it is the misfortune of the 
workers' rebellions of old that no theory of revolution directs their course, it is 
also this absence of theory that, from another perspective, makes possible their 
spontaneous energy and the enthusiasm with which they set about establishing a 
new society. This enthusiasm, which reaches its peak in the Commune, wins over 
to the working class at times the best elements of the bourgeoisie, but leads it in 
the end to succumb to their worst elements. Rimbaud and Courbet declare their 
support for the Commune. The burning of Paris is the worthy conclusion to 
Haussmarm's work of destruction. 

My good father had been in Paris. 

— Karl Gutzkow, Brief e mis Paris (Leipzig, 1842), vol. 1, p. 58 

Balzac was the first to speak of the ruins of the bourgeoisie. 28 But it was Surreal- 
ism that fi rst opened our eyes to them. The development of the forces of produc- 
tion shattered the wish symbols of the previous century, even before the 
monuments representing them had collapsed. In the nineteenth century this 
development worked to emancipate the forms of construction from art, just as in 
the sixteenth century the sciences freed themselves from philosophy. A start is 
made with architecture as engineered construction. Then comes the reproduc- 
tion of nature as photography. The creation of fantasy prepares to become prac- 
tical as commercial art. Literature submits to montage in the feuilleton. All these 
products are on the point of entering the market as commodities. But they linger 
on the threshold. From this epoch derive the arcades and interieurs, the exhibition 
halls and panoramas. They are residues of a dream world. The realization of 
dream elements, in the course of waking up, is the paradigm of dialectical think- 
ing. Thus, dialectical thinking is the organ of historical awakening. Every epoch, 
in fact, not only dreams the one to follow but, in dreaming, precipitates its 
awakening. It bears its end within itself and unfolds it — as Hegel already no- 
ticed — by cunning. With the destabilizing of the market economy, we begin to 
recognize the monuments of the bourgeoisie as ruins even before they have 

Paris, Capital of the Nineteenth Century 

Expose <of 1939> 


History is like Janus; it has two faces. Whether it looks at the past or at the present, it 
sees the same things. 

— Maxime Du Gamp, Paris, vol. 6, p. 315 

The subject of this book is an illusion expressed by Schopenhauer in the follow- 
ing formula: to seize the essence of bistory, it suffices to compare Herodotus and 
the morning newspaper. 1 What is expressed here is a feeling of vertigo charac- 
teristic of the nineteenth century's conception of history. It corresponds to a 
viewpoint according to which the course of the world is an endless series of facts 
congealed in the form of things. The characteristic residue of this conception is 
what has been called the "History of Civilization," which makes an inventory, 
point by point, of humanity's life forms and creations. The riches thus amassed 
in the aerarium of civilization henceforth appear as though identified for all time. 
This conception of history inimmizes the fact that such riches owe not only their 
existence but also their transmission to a constant effort of society — an effort, 
moreover, by which these riches are strangely altered. Our investigation proposes 
to show how, as a consequence of this reifying representation of civilization, the 
new forms of behavior and the new economically and technologically based 
creations that we owe to the nineteenth century enter the universe of a phantas- 
magoria. These creations undergo this "illumination" not only in a theoretical 
manner, by an ideological transposition, but also in the immediacy of their per- 
ceptible presence. They are manifest as phantasmagorias. Thus appear the ar- 
cades — first entry in the field of iron construction; thus appear the world 
exhibitions, whose link to the entertainment industry is significant. Also included 
in this order of phenomena is the experience of the flaneur, who abandons 
himself to the phantasmagorias of the marketplace. Corresponding to these 
phantasmagorias of the market, where people appear only as types, are the 
phantasmagorias of the interior, which are constituted by man's imperious need 
to leave the imprint of his private individual existence on the rooms he inhabits. 
As for the phantasmagoria of civilization itself, it found its champion in Hauss- 

mann and its manifest expression in his transformations of Paris. — Nevertheless, 
the pomp and the splendor with which commodity-producing society surrounds 
itself, as well as its illusory sense of security, are not immune to dangers; the 
collapse of the Second Empire and the Commune of Paris remind it of that. In 
the same period, the most dreaded adversary of this society, Blanqui, revealed to 
it, in his last piece of writing, the terrifying features of this phantasmagoria. 
Humanity figures there as damned. Everything new it could hope for turns out 
to be a reality that has always been present; and this newness will be as little 
capable of furnishing it with a liberating solution as a new fashion is capable of 
rejuvenating society. Blanqui's cosmic speculation conveys this lesson: that hu- 
manity will be prey to a mythic anguish so long as phantasmagoria occupies a 
place in it. 

A. Fourier, or the Arcades 

The magic columns of these pcdais 
Show to enthusiasts from all parts, 
With the objects their porticos display, 
That industry is the rival of the arts. 

— Mwveaux Tableaux de Pairs (Paris, 1828), p. 27 

Most of the Paris arcades are built in the fifteen years following 1822. The first 
condition for their development is the boom in the textile trade. Magasins de 
nouveautes, the first establishments to keep large stocks of merchandise on the 
premises, make their appearance. They are the forerunners of department stores. 
This is the period of which Balzac writes : "The great poem of display chants its 
stanzas of color from the Church of the Madeleine to the Porte Saint-Denis." The 
arcades are centers of commerce in luxury items. In fitting them out, art enters 
the service of the merchant. Contemporaries never tire of admiring them. For a 
long time they remain an attraction for tourists. An Illustrated Guide to Paris says: 
"These arcades, a recent invention of industrial luxury, are glass-roofed, marble- 
paneled corridors extending through whole blocks of buildings, whose owners 
have joined together for such enterprises. Lining both sides of the arcade, which 
gets its light from above, are the most elegant shops, so that the passage is a city, 
a world in miniature." The arcades are the scene of the first attempts at gas 

The second condition for the emergence of the arcades is the beginning of iron 
construction. Under the Empire, this technology was seen as a contribution to 
the revival of architecture in the classical Greek sense. The architectural theorist 
Boetticher expresses the general view of the matter when he says that, "with 
regard to the art forms of the new system, the Hellenic mode" must come to 
prevail. The Empire style is the style of revolutionary terrorism, for which the 
state is an end in itself. Just as Napoleon failed to understand the functional 

nature of the state as an instrument of domination by the bourgeoisie, so the 
architects of his time failed to understand the functional nature of iron, with 
which the constructive principle begins its domination of architecture. These 
architects design supports resembling Pompeian columns, and factories that imi- 
tate residential houses, just as later the first railroad stations will assume the look 
of chalets. Construction plays the role of the subconscious. Nevertheless, the 
concept of engineer, which dates from the revolutionary wars, starts to gain 
ground, and the rivalry begins between builder and decorator, Ecole Polytech- 
nique and Ecole des Beaux-Arts. — For the first time since the Romans, a new 
artificial building material appears: iron. It will undergo an evolution whose pace 
will accelerate in the course of the century. This development enters a decisive 
new phase when it becomes clear that the locomotive — object of the most diverse 
experiments since the years 1828-1829 — usefully functions only on iron rails. 
The rail becomes the first prefabricated iron component, the precursor of the 
girder. Iron is avoided in home construction but used in arcades, exhibition halls, 
train stations — buildings that serve transitory purposes. 


It is easy to understand that every mass-type "interest" which 
asserts itself historically goes far beyond its real limits in the 
"idea" or "imagination" when it first comes on the scene. 

— Marx and Engeis, Die heilige Familie 2 

The secret cue for the Fourierist Utopia is the advent of machines. The phalan- 
stery is designed to restore human beings to a system of relationships in which 
morality becomes superfluous. Nero, in such a context, would become a more 
useful member of society than Fenelon. Fourier does not dream of relying on 
virtue for this; rather, he relies on an efficient functioning of society, whose 
motive forces are the passions. In the gearing of the passions, in the complex 
meshing of the passions mecanutes with the passion cabalute, Fourier imagines the 
collective psychology as a clockwork mechanism. Fourierist harmony is the nec- 
essary product of this combinatory play. 

Fourier introduces into the Empire's world of austere forms an idyll colored by 
the style of the 1830s. He devises a system in which the products of his colorful 
vision and of his idiosyncratic treatment of numbers blend together. Fourier's 
"harmonies" are in no way akin to a mystique of numbers taken from any other 
tradition. They are in fact direct outcomes of his own pronouncements — lucubra- 
tions of his organizational imagination, which was very highly developed. Thus, 
he foresaw how significant meetings would become to the citizen. For the phalan- 
stery's inhabitants, the day is organized not around the home but in large halls 
similar to those of the Stock Exchange, where meetings are arranged by brokers. 

In the arcades, Fourier recognized the architectural canon of the phalanstery. 
This is what distinguishes the "empire" character of his Utopia, which Fourier 
himself naively acknowledges: "The societarian state will be all the more brilliant 
at its inception for having been so long deferred. Greece in the age of Solon and 

Pericles could already have undertaken it." 3 The arcades, which originally were 
designed to serve commercial ends, become dwelling places in Fourier. The 
phalanstery is a city composed of arcades. In this ville en passages, the engineer's 
construction takes on a phantasmagorical character. The "city of arcades" is a 
dream that will charm the fancy of Parisians well into the second half of the 
century. As late as 1869, Fourier's "street-galleries" provide the blueprint for 
Moilin's Paris en I an 2000* Here the city assumes a structure that makes it — with 
its shops and apartments — the ideal backdrop for the flaneur. 

Marx took a stand against Carl Griin in order to defend Fourier and to 
accentuate his "colossal conception of man." 5 He considered Fourier the only 
man besides Hegel to have revealed the essential mediocrity of the petty bour- 
geois. The systematic overcoming of this type in Hegel corresponds to its humor- 
ous annihilation in Fourier. One of the most remarkable features of die Fourierist 
Utopia is that it never advocated the exploitation of nature by man, an idea that 
became widespread in the following period. Instead, in Fourier, technology ap- 
pears as the spark that ignites the powder of nature. Perhaps this is the key to his 
strange representation of the phalanstery as propagating itself "by explosion." 
The later conception of man's exploitation of nature reflects the actual exploita- 
tion of man by the owners of the means of production. If the integration of the 
technological into social life failed, the fault lies in this exploitation. 

B. Gramlville, or the World Exhibitions 

Yes, when all the world from Paris to China 

Pays heed to your doctrine, O divine Saint-Simon, 

The glorious Golden Age will be reborn. 

Rivers will flow with chocolate and tea, 

Sheep roasted whole will frisk on the plain, 

And sauteed pike will swim in the Seine. 

Fricasseed spinach will grow on the ground, 

Garnished with crushed fried croutons; 

The trees will bring forth apple compotes, 

And fanners will harvest boots and coats. 

It will snow wine, it will rain chickens, 

And ducks cooked with turnips will fall from the sky. 

— Langle and Vanderburch, Louis-Bronze et k SaintSimonien 
(Theatre du Palais-Royal, February 27, 1832) 

World exhibitions are places of pilgrimage to the commodity fetish. "Europe is 
off to view the merchandise," says Taine in 1855. 6 The world exhibitions were 
preceded by national exhibitions of industry, the first of which took place on the 
Champ de Mars in 1798. It arose from the wish "to entertain the working classes, 
and it becomes for them a festival of emancipation." 7 The workers would consti- 
tute their first clientele. The framework of the entertainment industry has not yet 
taken shape; the popular festival provides this. Chaptal's celebrated speech on 

industry opens the 1798 exhibition. — The Saint-Simonians, who envision the 
industrialization of the earth, take up the idea of world exhibitions. Chevalier, the 
first authority in this new field, is a student of Enf antin and editor of the Saint- 
Simonian newspaper Le Globe. The Saint-Simonians anticipated the development 
of the global economy, but not the class struggle. Thus, we see that despite their 
participation in industrial and commercial enterprises around the middle of the 
century, they were helpless on all questions concerning the proletariat. 

World exhibitions glorify the exchange value of the commodity. They create a 
framework in which its use value becomes secondary. They are a school in which 
the masses, forcibly excluded from consumption, are imbued with the exchange 
value of commodities to the point of identifying with it: "Do not touch the items 
on display." World exhibitions thus provide access to a phantasmagoria which a 
person enters in order to be distracted. Within these divertissements, to which the 
individual abandons himself in the framework of the entertainment industry, he 
remains always an element of a compact mass. This mass delights in amusement 
parks — with their roller coasters, their "twisters," their "caterpillars" — in an atti- 
tude that is pure reaction. It is thus led to that state of subjection which propa- 
ganda, industrial as well as political, relies on. — The enthronement of the 
commodity, with its glitter of distractions, is the secret theme of Grandville's art. 
Whence the split between its Utopian and cynical elements in his work. The 
subtle artifices with which it represents inanimate objects correspond to what 
Marx calls the "theological niceties" of the commodity. 8 The concrete expression 
of this is clearly found in the specialite — a category of goods which appears at this 
time in the luxuries industry. World exhibitions construct a universe of specialite s. 
The fantasies of Grandville achieve the same thing. They modernize the uni- 
verse. In his work, the ring of Saturn becomes a cast-iron balcony on which the 
inhabitants of Saturn take the evening air. By the same token, at world exhibi- 
tions, a balcony of cast-iron would represent the ring of Saturn, and people who 
venture out on it would find themselves carried away in a phantasmagoria where 
they seem to have been transformed into inhabitants of Saturn. The literary 
counterpart to this graphic Utopia is the work of the Fourierist savant Toussenel. 
Toussenel was the natural-sciences editor for a popular newspaper. His zoology 
classifies the animal world according to the rule of fashion. He considers woman 
the intermediary between man and the animals. She is in a sense the decorator of 
the animal world, which, in exchange, places at her feet its plumage and its furs. 
"The lion likes nothing better than having its nails trimmed, provided it is a 
pretty girl that wields the scissors." 9 


Fashion: "Madam Death! Madam Death!" 

— Leopardi, "Dialogue between Fashion and Death" 10 

Fashion prescribes the ritual according to which the commodity fetish demands 
to be worshipped. Grandville extends the authority of fashion to objects of 
everyday use, as well as to the cosmos. In taking it to an extreme, he reveals its 

nature. It couples the living body to the inorganic world, lb the living, it defends 
the rights of the corpse. The fetishism which thus succumbs to the sex appeal of 
the inorganic is its vital nerve. The fantasies of Grandville correspond to the 
spirit of fashion that Apollinaire later described with this image: "Any material 
from nature's domain can now be introduced into the composition of women's 
clothes. I saw a charming dress made of corks. . . . Steel, wool, sandstone, and 
files have suddenly entered the vestmentary arts. . . . They're doing shoes in 
\fenetian glass and hats in Baccarat crystal." 11 

C. Louis Philippe, or the Interior 

I believe ... in my soul: the Tiling. 

— LeonDeubel, Oeuvres (Paris, 1929), p. 193 

Under the reign of Louis Philippe, the private individual makes his entry into 
history. For the private individual, places of dwelling are for the first time op- 
posed to places of work. The former come to constitute the interior. Its comple- 
ment is the office. (For its part, the office is distinguished clearly from the shop 
counter, which, with its globes, wall maps, and railings, looks like a relic of the 
baroque forms that preceded the rooms in today's residences.) The private indi- 
vidual, who in the office has to deal with realities, needs the domestic interior to 
sustain him in his illusions. This necessity is all the more pressing since he has no 
intention of grafting onto his business interests a clear perception of his social 
function. In the arrangement of his private surroundings, he suppresses both of 
these concerns. From this derive the phantasmagorias of the interior — which, for 
the private individual, represents the universe. In the interior, he brings together 
remote locales and memories of the past. His living room is a box in the theater 
of the world. 

The interior is the asylum where art takes refuge. The collector proves to be 
the true resident of the interior. He makes his concern the idealization of objects. 
To him falls the Sisyphean task of divesting things of their commodity character 
by taking possession of them. But he can bestow on them only connoisseur 
value, rather than use value. The collector delights in evoking a world that is not 
just distant and long gone but also better — a world in which, to be sure, human 
beings are no better provided with what they need than in the real world, but in 
which things are freed from the drudgery of being useful. 


The head . . . 

On the night table, like a ranunculus, 

— Baudelaire, "UneMartyre" 12 

The interior is not just the universe of the private individual; it is also his etui. 
Ever since the time of Louis Philippe, the bourgeois has shown a tendency to 
compensate for the absence of any trace of private life in the big city. He tries to 
do this within the four walls of his apartment. It is as if he had made it a point of 
honor not to allow the traces of his everyday objects and accessories to get lost. 
Indefatigably, he takes the impression of a host of objects; for his slippers and his 
watches, his blankets and his umbrellas, he devises coverlets and cases. He has a 
marked preference for velour and plush, which preserve the imprint of all con- 
tact. In the style characteristic of the Second Empire, the apartment becomes a 
sort of cockpit. The traces of its inhabitant are molded into the interior. Here is 
the origin of the detective story, which inquires into these traces and follows these 
tracks. Poe — with his "Philosophy of Furniture" and with his "new detectives" — 
becomes the fir st physiognomist of the domestic interior. The criminals in early 
detective fiction are neither gentlemen nor apaches, but simple private citizens of 
the middle class ("The Black Cat," "The TellTale Heart," "William Wilson"). 


This seeking for my home . . . was my affliction. . . . Where is — 

my home? I ask and seek and have sought for it; I have not found it. 

— Nietzsche, Abo sprach garathltstra 13 

The liquidation of the interior took place during the last years of the nineteenth 
century, in the work of Jugendstil, but it had been coming for a long time. The art 
of the interior was an art of genre. Jugendstil sounds the death knell of the genre. 
It rises up against the infatuation of genre in the name of a mal du siecle, of a 
perpetually open-armed aspiration. Jugendstil for the first time takes into consid- 
eration certain tectonic forms. It also strives to disengage them from their func- 
tional relations and to present them as natural constants; it strives, in short, to 
stylize them. The new elements of iron construction — especially the girder — 
command the attention of this "modern style." In the domain of ornamentation, 
it endeavors to integrate these forms into art. Concrete puts at its disposal new 
potentialities for architecture. With van de Velde, the house becomes the plastic 
expression of the personality. Ornament is to this house what the signature is to a 
painting. It exults in speaking a linear, mediumistic language in which the flower, 
symbol of vegetal life, insinuates itself into the very lines of construction. (The 
curved line of Jugendstil appears at the same time as the tide Les Fleurs du mal. A 
sort of garland marks the passage from the "Flowers of Evil" to the "souls of 
flowers" in Odilon Redon and on to Swaim's fare catleya.) u — Henceforth, as 
Fourier had foreseen, the true framework for the life of the private citizen must be 
sought increasingly in offices and commercial centers. The fictional framework 
for the individual's life is constituted in the private home. It is thus that Tlie 
Master Builder takes the measure of Jugendstil. The attempt by the individual to 
vie with technology by relying on his inner flights leads to his downfall: the 
architect Solness kills himself by plunging from his tower. 15 

D. Baudelaire, or the Streets of Paris 

Everything for me becomes allegory. 
—Baudelaire, "Le Cygne" 16 

Baudelaire's genius, which feeds on melancholy, is an allegorical genius. With 
Baudelaire, Paris becomes for the first time the subject of lyric poetry. This 
poetry of place is the opposite of all poetry of the soil. The gaze which the 
allegorical genius turns on the city betrays, instead, a profound alienation. It is 
the gaze of the flaneur, whose way of life conceals behind a beneficent mirage the 
anxiety of the future inhabitants of our metropolises. The flaneur seeks refuge in 
the crowd. The crowd is the veil through which the familiar city is transformed 
for the flaneur into phantasmagoria. This phantasmagoria, in which the city 
appears now as a landscape, now as a room, seems later to have inspired the 
decor of department stores, which thus put flanerie to work for profit. In any 
case, department stores are the last precincts of flanerie. 

In the person of the flaneur, the intelligentsia becomes acquainted with the 
marketplace. It surrenders itself to the market, thinking merely to look around; 
but in fact it is already seeking a buyer. In this intermediate stage, in which it still 
has patrons but is starting to bend to the demands of the market (in the guise of 
the feuilleton), it constitutes the boheme. The uncertainty of its economic position 
corresponds to the ambiguity of its political function. The latter is manifest 
especially clearly in the figures of the professional conspirators, who are recruited 
from the boheme. Blanqui is the most remarkable representative of this group. No 
one else in the nineteenth century had a revolutionary authority comparable to 
his. The image of Blanqui passes like a flash of lightning through Baudelaire's 
"Litanies de Satan." Nevertheless, Baudelaire's rebellion is always that of the 
asocial man: it is at an impasse. The only sexual communion of his life was with 
a prostitute. 


They were the same, had risen from the same hell, 
ITiese centenarian twins. 

— Baudelaire, "Les Sept Vieillards" 17 

The flaneur plays the role of scout in the marketplace. As such, he is also the 
explorer of the crowd. Within the man who abandons himself to it, the crowd 
inspires a sort of drunkenness, one accompanied by very specific illusions: the 
man flatters himself that, on seeing a passerby swept along by the crowd, he has 
accurately classified him, seen straight through to the innermost recesses of his 
soul — all on the basis of his external appearance. Physiologies of the time 
abound in evidence of this singular conception. Balzac's work provides excellent 
examples. The typical characters seen in passersby make such an impression on 

the senses that one cannot be surprised at the resultant curiosity to go beyond 
them and capture the special singularity of each person. But the nightmare that 
corresponds to the illusory perspicacity of the aforementioned physiognomist 
consists in seeing those distinctive traits — traits peculiar to the person — revealed 
to be nothing more than the elements of a new type; so that in the final analysis a 
person of the greatest individuality would turn out to be the exemplar of a type. 
This points to an agonizing phantasmagoria at the heart of flanerie. Baudelaire 
develops it with great vigor in "Les Sept Vieillards," a poem that deals with the 
seven-fold apparition of a repulsive-looking old man. This individual, presented 
as always the same in his multiplicity, testifies to the anguish of the city dweller 
who is unable to break the magic circle of the type even though he cultivates the 
most eccentric peculiarities. Baudelaire describes this procession as "infernal" in 
appearance. But the newness for which he was on the lookout all his life consists 
in nothing other than this phantasmagoria of what is "always the same." (The 
evidence one could cite to show that this poem transcribes the reveries of a 
hashish eater in no way weakens this interpretation.) 


Deep in the Unknown to find the new! 
— Baudelaire, "Le Voyage" 18 

The key to the allegorical form in Baudelaire is bound up with the specific 
signification which the commodity acquires by virtue of its price. The singular 
debasement of things through their signification, something characteristic of sev- 
enteenth-century allegory, corresponds to the singular debasement of things 
through their price as commodities. This degradation, to which things are subject 
because they can be taxed as commodities, is counterbalanced in Baudelaire by 
the inestimable value of novelty. La nouveaute represents that absolute which is 
no longer accessible to any interpretation or comparison. It becomes the ultimate 
entrenchment of art. The final poem of Les Flews du mal: "Le Voyage." "Death, 
old admiral, up anchor now." 13 The final voyage of the flaneur: death. Its destina- 
tion: the new. Newness is a quality independent of the use value of the commod- 
ity. It is the source of that illusion of which fashion is the tireless purveyor. The 
fact that art's last line of resistance should coincide with the commodity's most 
advanced line of attack — this had to remain hidden from Baudelaire. 

"Spleen et id£al" — in the title of this first cycle of poems in Les Fleurs du mal, 
the oldest loanword in the French language was joined to the most recent one. 20 
Ear Baudelaire, there is no contradiction between the two concepts. He recog- 
nizes in spleen the latest transfiguration of the ideal; the ideal seems to him the 
first expression of spleen. With this tide, in which the supremely new is presented 
to the reader as something "supremely old," Baudelaire has given the liveliest 
form to his concept of the modern. The linchpin of his entire theory of art is 
"modern beauty," and for him the proof of modernity seems to be this: it is 
marked with the fatality of being one day antiquity, and it reveals this to whoever 

witnesses its birth. Here we meet the quintessence of the unforeseen, which for 
Baudelaire is an inalienable quality of the beautiful. The face of modernity itself 
blasts us with its immemorial gaze. Such was the gaze of Medusa for the Greeks. 

E. Haussmaim, or the Barricades 

I venerate the Beautiful, the Good, and all things great; 
Beautiful nature, on which great art rests — 
How it enchants the ear and charms the eye! 
I love spring in blossom: women and roses. 

— Baron Haussrnaim, Confession d'un liondevenu vieux 21 

Haussmann's activity is incorporated into Napoleonic imperialism, which favors 
investment capital. In Paris, speculation is at its height. Haussmann's expropria- 
tions give rise to speculation that borders on fraud. The rulings of the Court of 
Cassation, which are inspired by the bourgeois and Orleanist opposition, in- 
crease the financial risks of Haussmannization. Haussmann tries to shore up his 
dictatorship by placing Paris under an emergency regime. In 1864, in a speech 
before the National Assembly, he vents his hatred of the rootless urban popula- 
tion. This population grows ever larger as a result of his projects. Rising rents 
drive the proletariat into the suburbs. The quartiers of Paris in this way lose their 
distinctive physiognomy. The "red belt" forms. Haussmann gave himself the title 
of "demolition artist." He believed he had a vocation for his work, and empha- 
sizes this in his memoirs. The central marketplace passes for Haussmann's most 
successful construction — and this is an interesting symptom. It has been said of 
the He de la Cite, the cradle of the city, that in the wake of Haussmann only one 
church, one public building, and one barracks remained. Hugo and Merimee 
suggest how much the transformations made by Haussmann appear to Parisians 
as a monument of Napoleonic despotism. The inhabitants of the city no longer 
feel at home there; they start to become conscious of the inhuman character of 
the metropolis. Maxime Du Camp's monumen»al work Paris owes its existence 
to this dawning awareness. The etchings of Meryon (around 1850) constitute the 
death mask of old Paris. 

The true goal of Haussmann's projects was to secure the city against civil war. 
He wanted to make the erection of barricades in the streets of Paris impossible 
for all time. With the same end in mind, Louis Philippe had already introduced 
wooden paving. Nevertheless, barricades had played a considerable role in the 
February Revolution. Engels studied the tactics of barricade fighting. Haussmann 
seeks to forestall such combat in two ways. Widening the streets will make the 
erection of barricades impossible, and new streets will connect the barracks in 
straight lines with the workers' districts. Contemporaries christened the opera- 
tion "strategic embellishment." 


The flowery realm of decorations, 
The charm of landscape, of architecture, 
And all the effect of scenery rest 
Solely on the law of perspective. 

— Franz Bohle, 'Theater-Catechisnms (Munich), p. 74 

Haussmann's ideal in city planning consisted of long straight streets opening 
onto broad perspectives. This ideal corresponds to the tendency — common in 
the nineteenth century — to ennoble technological necessities through spurious 
artistic ends. The temples of the bourgeoisie's spiritual and secular power were to 
find their apotheosis within the framework of these long streets. The perspec- 
tives, prior to their inauguration, were screened with canvas draperies and un- 
veiled like monuments; the view would then disclose a church, a train station, an 
equestrian statue, or some other symbol of civilization. With the Haussmanniza- 
tion of Paris, the phantasmagoria was rendered in stone. Though intended to en- 
dure in quasi-perpetuity, it also reveals its brittleness. The Avenue de l'Opera 
— which, according to a malicious saying of the day, affords a perspective on the 
porter's lodge at the Louvre — shows how unrestrained the prefect's megalo- 
mania was. 


Reveal to these depraved, 
O Republic, by foiling their plots, 
Your great Medusa face 
Ringed by red lightning. 

— PieiTe Dupont, Chant des owners 

The barricade is resurrected during the Commune. It is stronger and better 
designed than ever. It stretches across the great boulevards, often reaching a 
height of two stories, and shields the trenches behind it. Just as the Communist 
Manifesto ends the age of professional conspirators, so the Commune puts an end 
to the phantasmagoria that dominates the earliest aspirations of the proletariat. It 
dispels the illusion that the task of the proletarian revolution is to complete the 
work of '89 in close collaboration with the bourgeoisie. This illusion had marked 
the period 1831-1871, from the Lyons riots to the Commune. The bourgeoisie 
never shared in this error. Its battle against the social rights of the proletariat 
dates back to the great Revolution, and converges with the philanthropic move- 
ment that gives it cover and that was in its heyday under Napoleon III. Under his 
reign, this movement's monumental work appeared: Le Play's Owners europe'ens 
[European Workers]. 

Side by side with the overt position of philanthropy, the bourgeoisie has always 
maintained the covert position of class struggle. 22 As early as 1831, in the Journal 
des debats, it acknowledged that "every manufacturer lives in his factory like a 

plantation owner among his slaves." If it was fatal for the workers' rebellions of 
old that no theory of revolution had directed their course, it was this absence of 
theory that, from another perspective, made possible their spontaneous energy 
and the enthusiasm with which they set about establishing a new society. This 
enthusiasm, which reaches its peak in the Commune, at times won over to the 
workers' cause the best elements of the bourgeoisie, but in the end led the 
workers to succumb to its worst elements. Rimbaud and Courbet took sides with 
the Commune. The burning of Paris is the worthy conclusion to Baron Hauss- 
mann's work of destruction. 


Men of the nineteenth century, the hour of our apparitions is 
fixed forever, and always brings us back the very same ones. 

— Auguste Blanqui, L'Etenate par les ashes (Paris, 1872), pp. 74-75 

During the Commune, Blanqui was held prisoner in the fortress of Taureau. It 
was there that he wrote his L'Eternite par les astres [Eternity via the Stars], This 
book completes the century's constellation of phantasmagorias with one last, 
cosmic phantasmagoria which implicitly comprehends the severest critique of all 
the others. The ingenuous reflections of an autodidact, which form the principal 
portion of this work, open the way to merciless speculations that give the lie to 
the author's revolutionary elan. The conception of the universe which Blanqui 
develops in this book, taking his basic premises from the mechanistic natural 
sciences, proves to be a vision of hell. It is, moreover, the complement of that 
society which Blanqui, near the end of his life, was forced to admit had defeated 
him. The irony of this scheme — an irony which doubtless escaped the author 
himself — is that the terrible indictment he pronounces against society takes the 
form of an unqualified submission to its results. Blanqui's book presents the idea 
of eternal return ten years before ^arathustra — in a manner scarcely less moving 
than that of Nietzsche, and with an extreme hallucinatory power. 

This power is anything but triumphant; it leaves, on the contrary, a feeling of 
oppression. Blanqui here strives to trace an image of progress that (immemorial 
antiquity parading as up-to-date novelty) turns out to be the phantasmagoria of 
history itself . Here is the essential passage: 

The entire universe is composed of astral systems. To create them, nature has only a 
hundred simple bodies at its disposal. Despite the great advantage it derives from 
these resources, and the innumerable combinations that these resources afford its 
fecundity, the result is necessarily a finite number, like that of the elements them- 
selves ; and in order to fill its expanse, nature must repeat to infinity each of its 
original combinations or types. So each heavenly body, whatever it might be, exists in 
infinite number in time and space, not only in one of its aspects but as it is at each 
second of its existence, from birth to death. . . . The earth is one of these heavenly 
bodies. Every human being is thus eternal at every second of his or her existence. 
What I write at this moment in a cell of the Fort du Taureau I have written and shall 

write throughout all eternity — at a table, with a pen, clothed as I am now, in circum- 
stances like these. And thus it is for everyone. . . . The number of our doubles is 
infinite in time and space. One cannot in good conscience demand anything more. 
These doubles exist in flesh and bone — indeed, in trousers and jacket, in crinoline 
and chignon. They are by no means phantoms; they are the present eternalized. 
Here, nonetheless, lies a great drawback: there is no progress. . . . What we call 
"progress" is confined to each particular world, and vanishes with it. Always and 
everywhere in the terrestrial arena, the same drama, the same setting, on the same 
narrow stage — a noisy humanity infatuated with its own grandeur, believing itself to 
be the universe and living in its prison as though in some immense realm, only to 
founder at an early date along with its globe, which has borne with deepest disdain 
the burden of human arrogance. The same monotony, the same immobility, on 
other heavenly bodies. The universe repeats itself endlessly and paws the ground in 
place. In infinity, eternity performs — imperturbably — the same routines. 23 

This resignation without hope is the last word of the great revolutionary. The 
century was incapable of responding to the new technological possibilities with a 
new social order. That is why the last word was left to the errant negotiators 
between old and new who are at the heart of these phantasmagorias. The world 
dominated by its phantasmagorias — this, to make use of Baudelaire's term, is 
"modernity." Blanqui's vision has the entire universe entering the modernity of 
which Baudelaire's seven old men are the heralds. In the end, Blanqui views 
novelty as an attribute of all that is under sentence of danmation. Likewise in del 
et enfer [Heaven and Hell], a vaudeville piece that slightly predates the book: in 
this piece the torments of hell figure as the latest novelty of all time, as "pains 
eternal and always new." The people of the nineteenth century, whom Blanqui 
addresses as if they were apparitions, are natives of this region. 



A Arcades, Magisins de Nouveautes, 
Sales Clerks 31 

IS Fashion 62 

C Ancient Paris, Catacombs, 
Demolitions, Decline of 
Paris 82 

U Boredom, Eternal Return 101 

E Haussmannization, Barricade 
Fighting 120 

F Iron Construction 150 

€S Exhibitions, Advertising, 
Grandville 171 

11 The Collector 203 

I The Interior, The Trace 212 

J Baudelaire 228 

K Dream City and Dream House, 
Dreams of the Future, 
Anthropological Nihilism, 
Jung 388 

L Dream House, Museum, Spa 405 

M The Flaneur 416 

M On the Theory of Knowledge, 
Theory of Progress 456 

© Prostitution, Gambling 489 

P The Streets of Paris 516 

Q Panorama 527 

R Mirrors 537 

S Painringjugendsril, Novelty 543 

T Modes of Lighting 562 

U Saint-Simon, Railroads 571 

\ Conspiracies, Compagnonnage 603 

W Fourier 620 

X Marx 651 

Y Photography 671 

Z The Doll, The Automaton 693 

a Social Movement 698 

b Daumier 740 


4 Literary History, Hugo 744 



g The Stock Exchange, Economic 
History 779 


i Reproduction Technology, 
Lithography 786 

k The Commune 788 

1 The Seine, The Oldest Paris 796 

m Idleness 800 



p Anthropological Materialism, 
History of Sects 807 


r Ecole Poly technique 818 






[Arcades, Magasins de Nouveautes, Sales Clerks] 

The magic columns of these palaces 
Show to the amateur on all sides, 
In the objects their porticos display, 
That industry is the rival of the arts. 

— "Chanson nouvelle" cited in Nouveaux Tableaux de Paris, ou Observa- 
tions sur les moeurs et usages des Parisiens au commencement du XIX 
sikle (Paiis, 1828), vol. 1, p. 27 

For sale the bodies, the voices, the tremendous unquestionable 
wealth, what will never be sold. 

— Rimbaud 1 

"In speaking of the inner boulevards," says the Illustrated Guide to Paris, a com- 
plete picture of the city on the Seine and its environs from the year 1852, "we 
have made mention again and again of the arcades which open onto them. These 
arcades, a recent invention of industrial luxury, are glass-roofed, marble-paneled 
corridors extending through whole blocks of buildings, whose owners have 
joined together for such enterprises. Lining both sides of these corridors, which 
get their light from above, are the most elegant shops, so that the arcade is a city, 
a world in miniature □ Flaneur D, in which customers will find everything they 
need. During sudden rainshowers, the arcades are a place of refuge for the 
unprepared, to whom they offer a secure, if restricted, promenade — one from 
which the merchants also benefit." 0 Wfeather □ 

This passage is the locus classicus for the presentation of the arcades; for not 
only do the divagations on the flaneur and the weather develop out of it, but, 
also, what there is to be said about the construction of the arcades, in an eco- 
nomic and architectural vein, would have a place here. [Al , 1] 

Names of mmgmsins de nouveautes: La FiJle d'Honneur, La Vestale, Le Page Incon- 
stant, Le Masque de Fer <The Iron Mask> , Le Petit Chaperon Rouge <Little Red 
Riding Hood>, Petite Nanette, La Chaumiere allemande <The German Cottage), 
Au Mamelouk, Le Coin de la Rue <On the Streetcorner> — names that mostly come 
from successful vaudevilles. □ Mythology DA glover: Au Ci-Devant Jeune Homme. 
A confectioner: Aux Armes de Werther. 

"The name of the jeweler stands over the shop door in large inlaid letters — inlaid 
with fine imitation gems." Eduard Kroloff, Schilderungen mus Pmris (Hamburg, 
1839), vol. 2, p. 73. "In the Galerie Vero-Dodat, there is a grocery store; above its 
door, one reads the inscription: 'Gastronomie Cosmopolite.' The individual char- 
acters of the sign are formed, in comic fashion, from snipes, pheasants, hares, 
antlers, lohsters, fish, bird kidneys, and so forth." Kroloff, Schilderungen mus 
Paris, vol. 2, p. 75. 0 Grandville D [Al,2] 

As business increased, the proprietor would purchase stock for a week and, to 
make room for the goods being stored, would withdraw to the entresol. In this 
way, the boutique became a magasin. [Al,3] 

It was the time in which Balzac could write: "The great poem of display chants its 
stanzas of color from the Church of the Madeleine to the Porte Saint-Denis." Le 
Diable a Paris (Paris, 1846), vol. 2, p. 91 (Balzac, "Les Boulevards de Paris"). 


"The day the word specialty was discovered by Her Majesty Industry, queen of 
France and of neighboring regions: on that day, it is said, Mercury, speciml god of 
merchants and of several other social specialties, knocked three times with his 
caduceus on the front of the Stock Exchange and swore by the beard of Proserpine 
that the word was fine with him." □ Mythology □ The word is used initially, how- 
ever, only for luxury items. Lm Grande Ville: Nouvemu Tmblemu de Pmris (Paris, 
1844), vol. 2, p. 57 (Marc Fournier, "Les Specialities parisiennes"). [Al,5] 

"The narrow streets surrounding the Opera and the hazards to which pedestrians 
were exposed on emerging from this theater, which is always besieged by carriages, 
gave a group of speculators in 1821 the idea of using some of the structures sepa- 
rating the new theater from the boulevard. / This enterprise, a source of riches for 
its originators, was at the same time of great benefit to the public. / By way of a 
small, narrow covered arcade built of wood, one had, in fact, direct access, with 
all the security of the Opera's vestibule, to these galleries, and from there to the 
boulevard. . . . Above the entablature of Doric pilasters dividing the shops rise 
two floors of apartments, and above the apartments — running the length of the 
galleries — reigns an enormous glass-paned roof." J. A. Dulaure, Histoire phy- 
sique, civile et morale de Pmris depuis 1821 jusqu'a nos jours (Paris, 1835), vol. 2, 
pp. 28-29. [Al,6] 

Until 1870, the carriage ruled the streets. On the narrow sidewalks the pedestrian 
was extremely cramped, and so strolling took place principally in the arcades, 
which offered protection from bad weather and from the traffic. "Our larger 
streets and our wider sidewalks are suited to the sweet flanerie that for our fathers 
was impossible except in the arcades." □ Flaneur D Edmond Beaurepaire, Pmris 
d'hier et d'mujourd'hui: Lm Chronique des rues (Paris, 1900), p. 67. [Ala.l] 

Names of arcades: Passage des Panoramas, Passage Vero-Dodat, Passage du Desir os 
(leading in earlier days to a house of ill repute), Passage Colbert, Passage Vivi- 

enne, Passage du Pont-Neuf, Passage du Caire, Passage de la Reunion, Passage de ^ 
1' Opera, Passage de la Trinite, Passage du Cheval-Blanc, Passage Pressiere <Bes- 

sieres?>, Passage du Bois de Boulogne, Passage Grosse-Tete. (The Passage des (L 

Panoramas was known at first as the Passage Mires.) [Ala, 2] - 


The Passage Vero-Dodat (huilt between the Rue de Bouloy and the Rue Grenelle- g' 
Saint-Honore) "owes its name to two rich pork butchers, Messieurs Vero and 
Dodat, who in 1823 undertook its construction together with that of the adjacent 
buildings — an immense development. This led someone at the time to descrihe this S; 
arcade as a 'lovely work of art framed by two neighborhoods.'" J. A. Dulaure, 
Histoire physique, civile et morale de Paris depuis 1821 jusqu'k nos jours (Paris, ^ 
1835), vol. 2, p. 34. [Ala,3] & 


The Passage Vero-Dodat had marble flooring. The actress Rachel lived there for a G 
while. [Ala,4] 

No. 26, Galerie Colbert: "There, in the guise of a female glover, shone a beauty 
that was approachable but that, in the matter of youth, attached importance 
only to its own; she required her favorites to supply her with the finery from 
which she hoped to make a fortune. . . . This young and beautiful woman under 
glass was called 'the Absolute'; but philosophy would have wasted its time pursu- 
ing her. Her maid was the one who sold the gloves; she wanted it that way." □ Dolls 
□ Prostitutes D <Charles> Lefeuve, Les Anciennes Maisons de Pmris, vol. 4. <Paris, 
1875>,p. 70. [Ala,5] 

Cour du Commerce: "Here (using sheep) the first experiments were conducted 
with the guillotine; its inventor lived at that time on the Cour du Commerce and 
the Rue de 1' Ancienne-Comedie." Lefeuve, Les Anciennes Mmisons de Pmris, vol. 
4, p. 148. [Ala,6] 

"The Passage du Caire, 2 where the main business is lithographic printing, must 
have decked itself out in lights when Napoleon III abolished the stamp duty on 
commercial circulars; this emancipation made the arcade rich, and it showed its 
appreciation with expenditures for beautification. Up to that point, when it 
rained, umbrellas had been needed in its galleries, which in several places lacked 
glass covering." Lefeuve, Les Anciennes Maisons de Paris, vol. 2, p. 233. D Dream 
Houses D Weather D (Egyptian ornamentation). [Ala, 7] 

Impasse Maubert, formerly d'Amhoise. Around 1756, at Nos. 4-6, a poisoner 
resided with her two assistants. All three were found dead one morning — killed 
through inhalation of toxic fumes. [Ala, 8] 

Shops in the Passage Vero-Dodat. Courtesy of the Musee Camavalet, Paris. Photo copyright 
© Phototheque des Musees de la Ville de Paris. See Ala,4. 

Years of reckless financial speculation under Louis XVIII. With the dramatic 
signage of the magasins de nouveautes, art enters the service of the businessman. 


"After the Passage de Panoramas, which went hack to the year 1800 and which 
had an established reputation in society, there was, by way of example, the gallery 
that was opened in 1826 hy the butchers Vero and Dodat and that was pictured in 
the 1832 lithograph hy Arnout. After 1800 we must go all the way to 1822 to meet 
with a new arcade: it is between this date and 1834 that the majority of these 
singular passageways are constructed. The most important of them are grouped in 

Glass roof and iron girders, Passage Vivienne. Photographer unknown. Collection of 
Johann Friedrich Geist; courtesy Prestel Verlag, Munich. See Ala, 2. 

The Passage des Panoramas. Watercolor by an unknown artist, ca. 1810. Courtesy of 
Agence Giraudon. See A2,l. 

an area bounded by the Rue Croix-des-Petits-Champs to the south, the Rue de la 
Grange-Bateliere to the north, the Boulevard de Sebastopol to the east, and the 
Rue Ventadour to the west." Marcel Poete, Une vie de cite (Paris, 1925), pp. 373- 
374. [Ala,10] 

Shops in the Passage des Panoramas: Restaurant Veron, reading room, music 
shop, Marquis, wine merchants, hosier, haberdashers, tailors, bootmakers, ho- 
siers, bookshops, caricaturist, Theatre des Varietes. Compared with this, the Pas- 
sage Vivienne was the "solid" arcade. There, one found no luxury shops. D Dream 
Houses: arcade as nave with side chapels. □ [A2,l] 

People associated the "genius of the Jacobins with the genius of the industrials," 
but they also attributed to Louis Philippe the saying: "God be praised, and my 
shops too." The arcades as temples of commodity capital. [A2,2] 

The newest Paris arcade, on the Champs-Elysees, built by an American pearl 
king; no longer in business. D Decline D [A2,3] 

"Toward the end of the ancien regime, there were attempts to establish bazaar-like 
shops and fixed-price stores in Paris. Some large mmgmsins de nouvemutes — such 
as Le Diable Boiteux, Les Deux Magots, Le Petit Matelot, Pygmalion — were 
founded during the Restoration and during the reign of Louis Philippe; hut these 
were businesses of an inferior sort compared to today's establishments. The era of 
the department stores dates, in fact, only from the Second Empire. They have 
undergone a great deal of development since 1870, and they continue to develop." 
E<mile> Levasseur, Histoire du commerce de lm Frmnce, vol. 2 (Paris, 1912), 
p. 449. [A2,4] 

Arcades as origin of department stores? Which of the magasins named above 
were located in arcades? [A2,5] 

The regime of specialties furnishes also — this said in passing — the historical-mate- 
rialist key to the flourishing (if not the inception) of genre painting in the Forties 
of the previous century. With the growing interest of the bourgeoisie in matters 
of art, this type of painting diversified; but in conformity with the meager artistic 
appreciation initially displayed by this class, it did so in terms of the content, in 
terms of the objects represented. There appeared historical scenes, animal stud- 
ies, scenes of childhood, scenes from the life of monks, the life of the family, the 
life of the village — all as sharply defined genres. D Photography D [A2,6] 

The influence of commercial affairs on Lautreamont and Rimbaud should be 
looked into! [A2,7] 

"Another characteristic deriving chiefly from the Directory [presumably until 
around 1830??] would be the lightness of fabrics; on even the coldest days, one was 

seen only rarely in furs or warm overcoats. At the risk of losing their skin, women 
clothed themselves as though the harshness of winter no longer existed, as though 
nature had suddenly been transformed into an eternal paradise." <John> Grand- 
Carteret, Les Elegances de Im toilette (Paris), p. xxxiv. [A2,8] 

In other respects as well, the theater in those days provided the vocabulary for 
articles of fashion. Hats a la Tarare, a la Theodore, a la Figaro, a la Grande- 
Pretresse, a la Iphigenie, a la Calprenade, a la Victoire. The same niauerie that 
seeks in ballet the origin of the real betrays itself when — around 1830 — a news- 
paper takes the name Le Sylphe. 0 Fashion D [A2,9] 

Alexandre Dumas at a dinner party given by Princess Mathilde. The verse is 
aimed at Napoleon III. 

In their imperial splendor, 
The uncle and nephew are equal: 
The uncle seized the capitals, 
The nephew seizes our capital. 

Icy silence followed. Reported in Memoires du comte Hormce de Viel-Cmstel sur le 
regne de Napoleon III, vol. 2 (Paris, 1883), p. 185. [A2.10] 

"The coulisse* guaranteed the ongoing life of the Stock Exchange. Here there was 
never closing time; there was almost never night. When the Cafe Tortoni finally 
closed its doors, the column of stock jobbers would head across the adjacent 
boulevards and meander up and down there, collecting in front of the Passage de 
rOpera." Julius Rodenberg, Pmris bei Sonnenschein and Lmmpenlicht (Leipzig, 
1867), p. 97. [A2.ll] 

Speculation in railroad stocks under Louis Philippe. [A2,12] 

"Of the same extraction, furthermore [that is, from the house of Rothschild], is 
the amazingly eloquent Mires, who needs only to speak in order to convince his 
creditors that losses are profits — but whose name, after the scandalous trial 
against him, was nonetheless obliterated from the Passage Mires, which thereupon 
became the Passage des Princes (with the famous dining rooms of Peters restau- 
rant)." Rodenberg, Pmris bei Sonnenschein and Lmmpenlicht (Leipzig, 1867), 
p. 98. [A2a,l] 

Cry of the vendors of stock-exchange lists on the street: In the event of a rise in 
prices, "Rise in the stock market!" In the event of a fall, "Variations in the stock 
market!" The term "fall" was forbidden by the police. [A2,a,2] 

In its importance for the affairs of the coulisse, the Passage de FOpera is compara- 
ble to the Kranzlerecke. Speculator's argot "in the period preceding the outbreak 
of the German war [of 1866]: the 3-percent interest was called Alphonsine; the 

land credit, le gros Ernest; the Italian revenue, le pauvre Victor; the credit for 
movables, I e petit Jules.'" In Rodenberg <Leipzig, 1867>, p. 100. [A2a,3] 

Range of a stockbroker's fee: between 2 ,000,000 <sic> an d 1 ,400,000 francs. 


"The arcades, nearly all of which date from the Restoration." Theodore Muret, 
L'Histoire pmr le e (Paris, 1865), vol. 2, p. 300. [A2a,5] 

Some details concerning Avmnt, pendant, et mpres <Before, During, and After), by 
Scribe and Rougemont. Premier on June 28, 1828. The first part of the trilogy 
represents the society of the ancien regime, the second part depicts the Reign of 
Terror, and the third takes place in the society of the Restoration period. The 
main character, the General, has in peacetime become an industrialist and indeed 
a great manufacturer. "Here manufacturing replaces, at the highest level, the field 
worked by the soldier-laborer. The praises of industry, no less than the praises of 
warriors and Imuremtes, were sung by Restoration vaudeville. The bourgeois class, 
with its various levels, was placed opposite the class of nobles: the fortune ac- 
quired by work was opposed to ancient heraldry, to the turrets of the old manor 
house. This Third Estate, having become the dominant power, received in turn its 
flatterers." Theodore Muret, L'Histoire pmr le theatre, vol. 2, p. 306. [A2a,6] 

The Galeries de Bois, "which disappeared in 1828-1829 to make room for the 
Galerie d' Orleans, were made up of a triple line of shops that could hardly be 
called luxurious. There were two parallel lanes covered by canvas and planks, 
with a few glass panes to let the daylight in. Here one walked quite simply on the 
packed earth, which downpours sometimes transformed into mud. Yet people 
came from all over to crowd into this place, which was nothing short of mag- 
nificent, and stroll between the rows of shops that would seem like mere booths 
compared to those that have come after them. These shops were occupied chielly 
by two industries, each having its own appeal. There were, first, a great many 
milliners, who worked on large stools facing outward, without even a window to 
separate them; and their spirited expressions were, for many strollers, no small 
part of the place's attraction. And then the Galeries de Bois were the center of the 
new book trade." Theodore Muret, L'Histoire pmr le theatre, vol. 2, pp. 225-226. 


Julius Rodenberg on the small reading room in the Passage de l'Opera: "What a 
cheerful air this small, half -darkened room has in my memory, with its high book- 
shelves, its green tables, its red-haired gmrqon (a great lover of books, who was 
always reading novels instead of bringing them to others), its German newspapers, 
which every morning gladdened the heart of the German abroad (all except the 
Cologne paper, which on average made an appearance only once in ten days). But 
when there is any news in Paris, it is here that one can receive it. Softly whispered 
(for the redhead keeps a sharp lookout to make sure that neither he nor other 


readers will be disturbed by this), it passes from lips to ear, passes almost imper- 
ceptibly from pen to paper, and finally from writing desk to nearby letterbox. The 
good dmme du bureau has a friendly smile for all, and papers and envelopes for 
correspondents. The early mail is dispatched, Cologne and Augsburg have their 
news; and now — it is noontime! — to the tavern." Rodenberg, Pmris bei Sonnen- 
schein und Lmmpenlicht (Leipzig, 1867), pp. 6-7. [A2a,8] 

"The Passage du Caire is highly reminiscent, on a smaller scale, of the Passage du 
Saumon, which in the past existed on the Rue Montmartre, on the site of the 
present-day Rue Rachaumont." Paul Leautaud, "Vieux Paris," Mercure de 
France (October 15, 1927), p. 503. [A3,l] 

"Shops on the old model, devoted to trades found nowhere else, surmounted by a 
small, old-fashioned mezzanine with windows that each bear a number, on an 
escutcheon, corresponding to a particular shop. From time to time, a doorway 
giving onto a corridor; at the end of the corridor, a small stairway leading to these 
mezzanines. Near the knob of one of these doors, this handwritten sign: 

The worker next door 
would be obliged if, 
in closing the door, 
you refrained from slamming it. 

[A3 ,2] 

Another sign is cited in the same place (Leautaud, "Vieux Paris," Mercure de 
France [1927], pp. 502-503): 

2nd floor, to the right 


Old name for department stores: docks a bon mmrche — that is, "discount docks." 
<Sigfried> Giedion, Bmuen in Frtmkreich <Leipzig and Rerlin, 1928>, p. 31. 


Evolution of the department store from the shop that was housed in arcades. 
Principle of the department store: "The floors form a single space. They can be 
taken in, so to speak, 'at a glance.'" Giedion, Bauen in Frankreich, p. 34. [A3,5] 

Giedion shows (in Bauen in Frankreich, p. 35) how the axiom, "Welcome the 
crowd and keep it seduced" [Science et I'industrie, 143 [1925], p. 6), leads to 
corrupt architectural practices in the construction of the department store Au 
Printemps (1881-1889). Function of commodity capital! [A3,6] 

"Even women, who were forbidden to enter the Stock Exchange, assembled at the £ 

door in order to glean some indications of market prices and to relay their orders -~ 

to brokers through the iron grating. " Lm Trmnsformmtion de Pmris sous le Second 'i* 

Empire (authors Poete, Clouzot, Henriot) (Paris, 1910>, on the occasion of the Jf" 

exhibition of the library and the historical works of the city of Paris, p. 66. £L 

[A3,7] ?■ 


"We have no specialty" — this is what the well-known dealer in secondhand 8 

goods, Fremin, "the man with the head of gray," had written on the signboard ; 

advertising his wares in the Place des Abbesses. Here, in antique bric-a-brac, ^ 

reemerges the old physiognomy of trade that, in the first decades of the previous | 

century, began to be supplanted by the rule of the specialite. This "superior | 
scrap-yard" was called Au Philosophe by its proprietor. What a demonstration and 

demolition of stoicism! On his placard were the words: "Maidens, do not dally g£ 

under the leaves!" And: "Purchase nothing by moonlight." [A3,8] ^ 


Evidently people smoked in the arcades at a time when it was not yet customary to 
smoke in the street. "I must say a word here about life in the arcades, favored 
haunt of strollers and smokers, theater of operations for every kind of small 
business. In each arcade there is at least one cleaning establishment. In a salon 
that is as elegantly furnished as its intended use permits, gentlemen sit upon high 
stools and comfortably peruse a newspaper while someone busily brushes the dirt 
off their clothing and boots." Ferdinand von Gall, Paris und seine Smlons, vol. 2 
<01denburg, 1845>, pp. 22-23. [A3,9] 

A first winter garden — a glassed-in space with flower heds, espaliers, and foun- 
tains, in part underground — on the spot where, in the garden of the Palais-Royal 
in 1864. (and today as well?), the reservoir was located. Laid out in 1788. [A3, 10] 

"It is at the end of the Restoration that we see the first mmgmsins de nouvemutes: 
Les Vepres Siciliennes, Le Solitaire, La Fille Mai Gardee, Le Soldat Lahoureur, 
Les Deux Magots, Le Petit Saint-Thomas, Le Gagne-Denier (Penny Winnings>." 
<Lucien> Dubech and <Pierre> d'Espezel, Histoire de Pmris (Paris, 1926), p. 360. 

[A3, 11] 

"In 1820 . . . the Passage Viollet and the Passage des Deux Pavilions were opened. 
These arcades were among the novelties of their day. The result of private initia- 
tive, they were covered galleries housing shops that fashion made prosperous. The 
most famous was the Passage des Panoramas, which flourished from 1823 to 1831. 
'On Sundays,' observed Musset, one went en masse 'to the Panoramas or else to 
the boulevards.' It was also private initiative that created, somewhat hap- 
hazardly, the housing developments known as cites, the short streets or dead ends 
huilt at shared expense hy a syndicate of property owners." Lucien Dubech and 
Pierre d'Espezel, Histoire de Pmris (Paris, 1926), pp. 355-356. [A3a,l] 

In 1825, opening of the "Passages Dauphine, Saucede, Choiseul" and of the Cite 
Bergere. "In 1827 . . . the Passages Colbert, Crussol, de l'lndustrie. . . . 1828 saw 
the opening ... of the Passages Brady and des Gravilliers and the beginnings of 
the Galerie d' Orleans at the Palais-Royal, which replaced the wooden galleries 
that had burned down that year." Dubech and d'Espezel, Histoire de Pmris, 
pp. 357-358. [A3a,2] 

"The ancestor of the department stores, La Ville de Paris, appeared at 174 Rue 
Montmartre in 1843." Dubech and d'Espezel, Histoire de Paris, p. 389. [A3a,3] 

"Rainshowers annoy me, so I gave one the slip in an arcade. There are a great 
many of these glass-covered walkways, which often cross through the blocks of 
buildings and make several branchings, thus affording welcome shortcuts. Here 
and there they are constructed with great elegance, and in bad weather or after 
dark, when they are lit up bright as day, they offer promenades — and very popu- 
lar they are — past rows of glittering shops." Eduard Devrient, Briefe mus Pmris 
(Berlin, 1840), p. 34. [A3a,4] 

Rue-gmlerie. — "The street- gallery ... is the most important feature of a Phalan- 
stery and . . . cannot be conceived of in civilization. . . . Street-galleries . . . are 
heated in winter and ventilated in summer. . . . The street-gallery, or continuous 
peristyle, extends along the second story. . . . Those who have seen the gallery of 
the Louvre may take it as a model for the street-gallery in Harmony." E. Silber- 
ling, Dictionnmire de sociologie phmlmnsterienne (Paris, 1911), p. 386; citing 
<Charles> Fourier, Theorie de Vunite universelle (1822), p. 462, and he Nouvemu 
Monde industriel et societmire (1829), pp. 69, 125, 272. In addition: Gmlerie. — 
"All portions of the central edifice can he traversed by means of a wide gallery 
which runs along the second floor. . . . Thus, everything is linked by a series of 
passageways which are sheltered, elegant, and comfortable in winter thanks to the 
help of heaters and ventilators." E. Silberling, Dictionnmire, pp. 197-198; citing 
Fourier, Theorie mixte, ou speculmtive, et synthese routiniere de Vmssocimtion, 
p. 14. 1 [A3a,5] 

The Passage du Caire adjoining the former Cour des Miracles. Built in 1799 on the 
site of the old garden of the Convent of the Daughters of God. [A3a,6] 

Trade and traffic are the two components of the street. Now, in the arcades the 
second of these has effectively died out: the traffic there is rudimentary. The 
arcade is a street of lascivious commerce only; it is wholly adapted to arousing 
desires. Because in this street the juices slow to a standstill, the commodity 
proliferates along the margins and enters into fantastic combinations, like the 
tissue in tumors. — The flaneur sabotages the traffic. Moreover, he is no buyer. He 
is merchandise. [A3a,7] 

For the first time in history, with the establishment of department stores, consum- 
ers begin to consider themselves a mass. (Earlier it was only scarcity which 
taught them that.) Hence, the circus-like and theatrical element of commerce is 
quite extraordinarily heightened. [A4,l] 

With the appearance of mass-produced articles, the concept of specialty arises. Its 
relation to the concept of originality remains to be explored. [A4,2] 

"I grant that business at the Palais-Royal has had its day; but I believe that this 
should be attributed not to the absence of streetwalkers but to the erection of new 
arcades, and to the enlargement and refurbishing of several others. I will mention 
the Passages de l'Opera, du Grand-Cerf , du Saumon, de Vero-Dodat, Delorme, de 
Choiseul, anddes Panoramas." F. F. A. Beraud, Les Filles publiques de Pmris et Im 
police qui les regit (Paris and Leipzig, 1839), vol. 1, p. 205. [A4,3] 

"I do not know if business at the Palais-Royal has really suffered from the absence 
of femmes tie debmuche; but what is certain is that public decency there has im- 
proved enormously. ... It seems to me, furthermore, that respectable women now 
willingly do their shopping in the shops of the galleries . . . ; this has to be an 
advantage for the merchants. For when the Palais-Royal was invaded by a swarm 
of practically nude prostitutes, the gaze of the crowd was turned toward them, and 
the people who enjoyed this spectacle were never the ones who patronized the local 
businesses. Some were already ruined by their disorderly life, while others, yield- 
ing to the allure of libertinism, had no thought then of purchasing any goods, even 
necessities. I believe I can affirm . . . that, during those times of inordinate toler- 
ance, several shops at the Palais-Royal were closed, and in others huyers were 
rare. Thus, business did not at all prosper there, and it would be more accurate to 
say that the stagnation of business at that time was owing rather to the free circu- 
lation of the filles publiques than to their absence, which today has brought back 
into the galleries and the garden of this palace numerous strollers, who are far 
more favorable to business than prostitutes and libertines." F. F. A. Beraud, Les 
Filles publiques de Pmris (Paris and Leipzig, 1839), vol. 1, pp. 207-209. [A4,4] 

The cafes are filled 
With gourmets, with smokers; 
The theaters are packed 
With cheerful spectators. 
The arcades are swarming 
With gawkers, with enthusiasts, 
And pickpockets wriggle 
Behind the flaneurs. 

Ennery and Lemoine, Paris la nuit, cited in H. Gourdon de Genouillac, Les Re- 
frains de Im rue de 1830 a 1870 (Paris, 1879), pp. 46-47. — To be compared with 
Baudelaire's "Crepuscule du soir." [A4a,l] 

"And those who cannot pay for ... a shelter? They sleep wherever they find a 
place, in passages, arcades, in corners where the police and the owners leave them 
undisturbed." Friedrich Engels, Die Lage der mrbeitenden Masse in England, 

"In all the shops, like a uniform, the oak counter is adorned with counterfeit 
coins, in every kind of metal and in every format, mercilessly nailed in place like 
birds of prey on a door — unimpeachable evidence of the proprietor's scrupulous 
honesty." Nadar, Qiiand j'etuis photogrmphe (Paris <1900>), p. 294 ("1830 et envi- 

Fourier on the street-galleries: "To spend a winter's day in a Phalanstery, to visit 
all parts of it without exposure to the elements, to go to the theater and the opera 
in light clothes and colored shoes without worrying about the mud and the cold, 
would be a charm so novel that it alone would suffice to make our cities and castles 
seem detestable. If the Phalanstery were put to civilized uses, the mere conven- 
ience of its sheltered, heated, and ventilated passageways would make it enor- 
mously valuable. 6 Its property value . . . would be double that of another building 
its size." E. Poisson, Fourier [Anthology] (Paris, 1932), p. 144. [A4a,4] 

"The street-galleries are a mode of internal communication which would alone be 
sufficient to inspire disdain for the palaces and great cities of civilization. . . .The 
king of France is one of the leading monarchs of civilization; he does not even have 
a porch in his Tuileries palace. The king, the queen, the royal family, when they 
get into or out of their carriages, are forced to get as wet as any petty bourgeois 
who summons a cab before his shop. Doubtless the king will have on hand, in the 
event of rain, a good many footmen and courtiers to hold an umbrella for him . . . ; 
but he will still be lacking a porch or a roof that would shelter his party. . . . Let us 
describe the street-galleries which are one of the most charming and precious 
features of a Palace of Harmony. . . . The Phalanx has no outside streets or open 
roadways exposed to the elements. All portions of the central edifice can be tra- 
versed by means of a wide gallery which runs along the second floor of the whole 
building. At each extremity of this spacious corridor there are elevated passages, 
supported by columns, and also attractive underground passages which connect 
all the parts of the Phalanx and the adjoining buildings. Thus, everything is linked 
by a series of passageways which are sheltered, elegant, and comfortable in winter 
thanks to the help of heaters and ventilators. . . . The street-gallery, or continuous 
peristyle, extends along the second story. It could not be placed on the ground 
floor, since the lower part of the building will be traversed by carriage en- 
trances. . . . The street-galleries of a Phalanx wind along just one side of the cen- 
tral edifice and stretch to the end of each of its wings. All of these wings contain a 
double row of rooms. Thus, one row of rooms looks out upon the fields and gar- 
dens, and the other looks out upon the street-gallery. The street-gallery, then, will 
be three stories high with windows on one side. . . . The kitchens and some of the 

2nd ed. (Leipzig, 1848), p. 46 ("Die grossen Stadte"). 5 



[A4 a ,3] 

public halls will be located on the ground floor. There will also be trap doors in the 

floors of the dining rooms on the second story. Thus, the tables may be set in the -- 

kitchens below and simply raised through the trap doors when it is time to eat. > 

These trap doors will be particularly useful during festivities, such as the visits of tf 

traveling caravans and legions, when there will be too many people to eat in the §^ 

ordinary dining rooms. Then double rows of tables will be set in the street-galler- - w 
ies, and the food will be passed up from the kitchen. / The principal puhlic halls 

should not be situated on the ground floor. There are two reasons for this. The first § 

r .... i' 

is that the patriarchs and children, who have difficulty climbing stairs, should be ^ 
lodged in the lower parts of the huilding. The second is that the children should be 

kept in isolation from the nonindustrial activities of the adults." Poisson, Fourier | 

[Anthology] (Paris, 1932), pp. 139-144. 7 [A5] 1 

Yes, pmrbleu! You know the power of Tibet. 

Implacable enemy of proud innocence, " 

Hardly does it appear than it carries away ^ 

The bookkeeper's wife and the burgher's daughter, £T 

The stern prude and the frigid coquette: 

It signals the victory of lovers; 

For fashion tolerates no resistance, 

And not to have it puts one to shame. 

Its fabric, braving the current bon mot, 

Softens in its folds the arrows of ridicule; 

Seeing it, you think of a magical talisman: 

It braces the spirits and subjugates the heart; 

For it to appear is already a triumph, its coming a conquest; 

It reigns as conqueror, as sovereign, as master; 

And treating its quiver as a burden quite useless, 

Love has fashioned its bandeau of cashmere. 

Edouard [d'Anglemont], Le Cmchemire, one-act comedy in verse, performed for 
the first time in Paris at the Theatre Royal de l'Odeon, on December 16, 1826 
(Paris, 1827), p. 30. [A5a,l] 

Delvau on Chodruc-Duclos: "Under the reign of Louis Philippe, who owed him 
nothing, he . . . did what he had done under the reign of Charles X, who in fact 
owed him something. . . . His bones took more time to rot than his name took to 
erase itself from the memory of men." Alfred Delvau, Les Lions du jour (Paris, 
1867), pp. 28-29. [A5a,2] 

"It was not until after the expedition to Egypt," when people in France gave 
thought to expanding the use of precious cashmere fabric, that a woman, Greek by 
birth, introduced it to Paris. M. Ternaux . . . conceived the admirable project of 
raising Hindustani goats in France. Since then, . . . there have been plenty of 
workers to train and trades to establish, in order for us to compete successfully 
against products renowned through so many centuries! Our manufacturers arc 

beginning to triumph . . . over women's prejudice against French shawls. . . . We 
have managed to make women forget for a moment the ridiculous fabric-designs of 
the Hindus by happily reproducing the vividness and brilliant harmony of the 
flowers found in our own gardens. There is a book in which all these interesting 
subjects are discussed both knowledgeably and elegantly. L'Histoire des schalls, 
by M. Rey, though written for the shawl manufacturers of Paris, is guaranteed to 
captivate women. . . . This book, together with its author's magnificent manufac- 
tured goods, will undoubtedly help to dissipate French people's infatuation with 
the work of foreigners. M. Rey, manufacturer of shawls made of wool, cashmere, 
etc. . . . has brought out several cashmeres ranging in price from 170 to 500 francs. 
We owe to him, among other improvements, . . . the graceful imitation of native- 
grown flowers in place of the bizarre palms of the Orient. Our praise would not he 
equal to the benefits he has bestowed, . . . nor could it render the high honor that 
this litterateur-manufacturer deserves for his long research and his talents. We 
must be content merely to name him." Chenoue and H. D., Notice sur Vexposition 
des produits de Uindustrie et des arts qui m lieu a Doumi en 1827 (Douai, 1827), 
pp. 24-25. [A6,l] 

After 1850: "It is during these years that the department stores are created: Au 
Bon Marche, Le Louvre, La Belle Jardiniere. Total sales for Au Bon Marche in 
1852 were only 450,000 francs; by 1869 they had risen to 21 million." Gisela 
Freund, La Photogrmphie du point de vue sociologique (manuscript, pp. 85-86); 
citing Lavisse, Histoire de France. [A6,2] 

"The printers . . . were able to appropriate, at the end of the eighteenth century, a 
vast area: . . . the Passage du Caire and its environs. . . . But with the extension of 
the boundaries of Paris, printers . . . were dispersed to all parts of the city. . . . 
Alas! A glut of printers! Today workers corrupted by the spirit of speculation 
ought to remember that . . . between the Rue Saint-Denis and the Cour des Mir- 
acles there still exists a long, smoke-filled gallery where their true household gods 
lie forgotten." Fdouard Foucaud, Paris inventeur (Paris, 1844), p. 154. [A6,3] 

Description of the Passage du Saumon, "which, hy way of three stone steps, 
opened onto the Rue Montorgueil. It was a narrow corridor decorated with pilas- 
ters supporting a ridged glass roof, which was littered with garbage thrown from 
neighboring houses. At the entrance, the signboard — a tin salmon indicating the 
main characteristic of the place: the air was filled with the smell of fish . . . and also 
the smell of garlic. It was here, above all, that those arriving in Paris from the 
south of France would arrange to meet. . . . Through the doors of the shops, one 
spied dusky alcoves where sometimes a piece of mahogany furniture, the classic 
furniture of the period, would manage to catch a ray of light. Further on, a small 
bar hazy with the smoke of tobacco pipes; a shop selling products from the colonies 
and emitting a curious fragrance of exotic plants, spices, and fruits; a ballroom 
open for dancing on Sundays and workday evenings; finally the reading room of 

A branch of La Belle Jardiniere in Marseilles. From Le Monde illustre, March 28, 1863. See A6,2. 

Sieur Ceccherini, who offered to patrons his newspapers and his books." J. Lucas- 
Dubreton, L'Affmire Alibmud, ou Louis-Philippe trmque (1836; rpt. Paris, 1927), 
pp. 114-115. [A6a,l] 

On the occasion of disturbances associated with the burial of General Lamarque 
on June 5, 1832, the Passage du Saumon was the scene of a battle waged on 
barricades, in which 200 workers confronted the troops. [A6a,2] 

"Martin: Business, you see, sir, ... is the ruler of the world! — Desgenmis: I am of 
your opinion, Monsieur Martin, but the ruler alone is not enough; there must be 
subjects. And that is where painting, sculpture, music come in. . . . — Martin: A 
little of that is necessary, surely, . . . and ... I myself have encouraged the arts. 
Why, in my last establishment, the Cafe de France, I had many paintings on 
allegorical subjects. . . . What is more, I engaged musicians for the evenings. . . . 
Finally, if I may invite you to accompany me . . . , you will see under my peristyle 
two very large, scantily attired statues, each with a light fixture on its head. — Des- 
genmis: A light fixture? — Mmrtin: That is my idea of sculpture: it must serve some 
purpose. . . . All those statues with an arm or a leg in the air — what are they good 

for, since they've had no pipe installed to carry gas? . . . What are they good for?" 
Theodore Barriere, Les Pmrisiens, produced at the Theatre du Vaudeville on De- 
cember 28, 1854 (Paris, 1855), p. 26. [Tbe play is set in 1839.] [A6a3] 

There was a Passage du Desir. <See Ala, 2. > [A6a,4] 

Chodruc-Duclos — a supernumerary at the Palais-Royal. He was a royalist, an 
opponent of the Vendee, and had grounds for complaining of ingratitude under 
Charles X. He protested by appearing publicly in rags and letting his beard grow. 


Apropos of an engraving that pictures a shopfront in the Passage Vero-Dodat: 
"Onecannotpraisethis arrangement too highly — the purity of its lines; the pictur- 
esque and brilliant effect produced by tbe gaslight globes, which are placed be- 
tween the capitals of the two double columns bordering each shop; and finally the 
shop partitions, which are set off by reflecting plate glass." Cabinet des Estampes 
<in the Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris>. [A7,l] 

At No. 32 Passage Brady there was a dry-cleaning establishment, Maison Donnier. 
It was <famous> for its "giant workrooms" and its "numerous personnel." A con- 
temporary engraving shows the two-story building crowned by small mansards; 
female workers in great numbers are visible through the windows; from the ceil- 
ings bangs the linen. [A7,2] 

Engraving from the Empire: The Dmnce of the Shawl m.mong the Three Sultmnms. 
Cabinet des Estampes. [A7,3] 

Sketch and floor plan of the arcade at 36 Rue Hauteville, in black, blue, and pink, 
from the year 1856, on stamped paper. A hotel attached to the arcade is like- 
wise represented. In boldface: "Property for lease." Cabinet des Estampes. 


The first department stores appear to be modeled on oriental bazaars. From 
engravings one sees that, at least around 1880, it was the fashion to cover with 
tapestries the balustrades of the staircases leading to the atrium. For example, in 
the store called City of Saint-Denis. Cabinet des Estampes. [A7,5] 

"The Passage de l'Opera, with its two galleries, the Galerie de l'Horloge and the 
Galerie du Barometre. . . . The opening of the Opera on the Rue Le Peletier, in 
1821, brought this arcade into vogue, and in 1825 the duchesse de Berry came in 
person to inaugurate a 'Europama' in the Galerie du Barometre. . . . The grisettes 
of the Restoration danced in the Idalia Hall, built in the basement. Later, a cafe 
called the Divan de l'Opera was established in the arcade. . . . Also to be found in 
the Passage de l'Opera was the arms manufacturer Caron, the music publisher 

The Passage de l'Opera, 1822-1823, Courtesy of the Musee Camavalet, Paris. Photo copyright 
© Phototheque des Musees de !a Ville de Paris. See A7,6. 

Street scene in front of the Passage des Panoramas. Lithograph by Opitz, 1814. Courtesy of the 
Bibliotheque Nationale de France. See A7,Z 

Marguerie, the pastry chef Rollet, and finally the perfume shop of the Opera. . . . 
In addition, . . . there was Lemoimier, artiste en cheveux— which is to say, manu- 
facturer of handkerchiefs, reliquaries, and funeral items made of hair." Paul 
d'Ariste, La Vieet le monde du. boulevard, 1830-1879 (Paris <1930>), pp. 14-16. 


"The Passage des Panoramas, so named in memory of the two panoramas that 
stood on either side of its entranceway and that disappeared in 1831." Paul 
d'Ariste, L« Vie et le monde du boulevmrd (Paris), p. 14. [A7,7] 

The beautiful apotheosis of the "marvel of the Indian shawl," in the section on 
Indian art in Michelet's Bible de I'hummnite (Paris, 1864). [A7a,l] 

And Jehuda ben Halevy, 

In her view, would have been honored 

Quite enough by being kept in 

Any pretty box of cardboard 

With some very swanky Chinese 
Arabesques to decorate it, 
Like a bonbon box from Marquis 
In the Passage Panorama. 

Heinrich Heine, Hebrdische Melodien, "Jehuda ben Halevy," part 4, in Ro- 
mmnzero, book 3 (cited in a letter from Wiesengrund). 9 [A7a,2] 

Signboards. After the rebus style came a vogue for literary and military allusions. 
"If an eruption of the hilltop of Montmartre happened to swallow up Paris, as 
Vesuvius swallowed up Pompeii, one would be able to reconstruct from our sign- 
boards, after fifteen hundred years, the history of our military triumphs and of 
our literature." Victor Fournel, Ce qu'on voit dmns les rues de Paris (Paris, 1858), 
p. 286 ("Enseignes et affiches"). [A7a,3] 

Chaptal, in his speech on protecting brand names in industry: "Let us not 
assume that the consumer will be adept, when making a purchase, at distinguish- 
ing the degrees of quality of a material. No, gentlemen, the consumer cannot 
appreciate these degrees; he judges only according to his senses. Do the eye or 
the touch suffice to enable one to pronounce on the fastness of colors, or to 
determine with precision the degree of fineness of a material, the nature and 
quality of its manufacture?" <Jean-Antoine-Claude> Chaptal, Rapport au nom 
d 'une commission speciale char gee de I'examen du projet de loi relatif aux alterations et 
suppositions de noms sur les produits fthriques [Chambre des Pairs de France, ses- 
sion of July 17, 1824], p. 5. — The importance of good professional standing is 
magnified in proportion as consumer know-how becomes more specialized. 


"What shall I say now of that coulisse which, not content with harboring a two- 
hour illegal session at the Stock Exchange, spawned once again not long ago, in the 
open air, two demonstrations per day on the Boulevard des Italiens, across from 
the Passage de l'Opera, where five or six hundred market speculators, forming a 
compact mass, followed clumsily in the wake of some forty unlicensed brokers, all 
the while speaking in low voices like conspirators, while police officers prodded 

them from behind to get them to move on, as one prods fat, tired sheep being led to 
the slaughterhouse." M. J. Ducos (de Gondrin), Comment on se mine a la Bourse 
(Paris, 1858), p. 19. [A7a,5] 

It was at 271 Rue Saint-Martin, in the Passage du Cheval Rouge, that Lacenaire 
committed his murders. [A7a,6] 

A sign: "L'epe-scie"<The Sawed-Off Epe[e]>. 10 [A7a,7] 

From a prospectus: "To the inhabitants of the Rues Beauregard, Bourbon- Ville- 
neuve, du Caire, and de la Cour des Miracles. ... A plan for two covered arcades 
running from the Place du Caire to the Rue Beauregard, ending directly in front of 
the Rue Sainte-Barbe, and linking the Rue Bourbon- Villeneuve with the Rue 
Hautcville. . . . Gentlemen, for some time now we have been concerned about the 
future of this neighborhood, and it pains us to see that properties so close to the 
boulevard carry a value so far below what they ought to have. This state of affairs 
would change if lines of communication were opened. Since it is impossible to 
construct new streets in this area, due to the great unevenness of the ground, and 
since the only workable plan is the one we have the honor of submitting to you 
here, we hope, Gentlemen, that in your capacity as owners . . . you will in turn 
honor us with your cooperation and affiliation. . . . Every partner will be required 
to pay an installment of 5 francs on each 250-franc share in the future company. 
As soon as a capital sum of 3,000 francs is realized, this provisional subscription 
will become fmal — said sum being judged at present sufficient. . . . Paris, this 20th 
of October, 1847." Printed prospectus inviting subscriptions. [A8,l] 

"In the Passage Choiseul, M. Comte, 'Physician to the King,' presents his cele- 
brated troupe of child actors extraordinaires in the interval between two magic 
shows in which he himself performs." J.-L. Croze, "Quelques spectacles de Paris 
pendant l'ete de 1835" (Le Temps, August 22, 1935). [A8,2] 

"At this turning point in history, the Parisian shopkeeper makes two discoveries 
that revolutionize the world of la nouveaute: the display of goods and the male 
employee. The display, which leads him to deck out his shop from floor to ceiling 
and to sacrifice three hundred yards of material to garland his facade like a flag- 
ship; and the male employee, who replaces the seduction of man by woman — 
something conceived by the shopkeepers of the ancien regime — with the seduction 
of woman by man, which is psychologically more astute. Together with these comes 
the fixed price, the known and nonnegotiable cost." H. Clouzot and R.-H. Valensi, 
Le Paris de "La Comedie humaine": Balzac et ses fournisseurs (Paris, 1926), 
pp. 31-32 ("Magasins de nouveautes"). [A8,3] 

When a magasin de nouveautes rented the space formerly occupied by Hetzel, the 
editor of La Comedie humaine, Balzac wrote: "T/ie Human Comedy has yielded to 

the comedy of cashijieres." (Clouzot and Valensi, Le Paris de "L« Comedie hu- 
muine," p. 37.) [A8,4] 

Passage du Commerce-Saint- Andre: a reading room. [ A8a,l] 

"Once the socialist government had become the legitimate owner of all the houses 
of Paris, it handed them over to the architects with the order ... to establish 
street- galleries . . . . The architects accomplished the mission entrusted to them as 
well as could be expected. On the second story of every house, they took all the 
rooms that faced the street and demolished the intervening partitions; they then 
opened up large bays in the dividing walls, thereby obtaining street-galleries that 
had the height and width of an ordinary room and that occupied the entire length 
of a block of buildings. In the newer qumrtiers, where neighboring houses have 
their floors at approximately the same height, the galleries could be joined to- 
gether on a fairly even level. . . . But on older streets . . . the floors had to be 
carefully raised or lowered, and often the builders had to resign themselves to 
giving the floor a rather steep slant, or breaking it up with stairs. When all the 
blocks of houses were thus traversed by galleries occupying . . . their second story, 
it remained only to connect these isolated sections to one another in order to 
constitute a network . . . embracing the whole city. This was easily done by erect- 
ing covered walkways across every street. . . . Walkways of the same sort, but 
much longer, were likewise put up over the various boulevards, over the squares, 
and over the bridges that cross the Seine, so that in the end ... a person could 
stroll through the entire city without ever being exposed to the elements .... As 
soon as the Parisians had got a taste of the new galleries, they lost all desire to set 
foot in the streets of old — which, they often said, were fit only for dogs." Tony 
Moilin, Pmris enl'mn 2000 (Paris, 1869), pp. 9-11. [A8a,2] 

"The second floor contains the street-galleries. . . . Along the length of the great 
avenues, . . . they form street-salons. . . . The other, much less spacious galleries 
are decorated more modestly. They have been reserved for retail businesses that 
here display their merchandise in such a way that passersby circulate no longer in 
front of the shops but in their interior." Tony Moilin, Pmris en Vmn 2000 (Paris, 
1869), pp. 15-16 ("Maisons-modeles"). [A8a,3] 

Sales clerks: "There are at least 20,000 in Paris. ... A great number of sales clerks 
have been educated in the classics . . . ; one even finds among them painters and 
architects unaffiliated with any workshop, who use a great deal of their knowledge 
... of these two branches of art in constructing displays, in determining the design 
of new items, in directing the creation of fashions." Pierre Larousse, Grmnd Dic- 
tionnmire universel du XIX" siecle, vol. 3 (Paris, 1867), p. 150 (article on "Cali- 
cot"). [A9,l] 

"Why did the author of Etudes de moeurs u <Studies of Manners) choose to pre- 
sent, in a work of fiction, lifelike portraits of the notables of his day? Doubtless for 

his own amusement first of all. . . . This explains the descriptions. For the direct 
citations, another reason must be found — and we see none better than his unmis- 
takable aim of providing publicity. Balzac is one of the first to have divined the 
power of the advertisement and, above all, the disguised advertisement. In those 
days, . . . the newspapers were unaware of such power. ... At the very most, 
around midnight, as workers were finishing up the layout, advertising writers 
might slip in at the bottom of a column some lines on Pate de Regnault or Brazilian 
Blend. The newspaper advertisement as such was unknown. More unknown still 
was a process as ingenious as citation in a novel. . . . The tradesmen named by 
Balzac . . . are clearly his own. . . . No one understood better than the author of 
Cesar Birotteau the unlimited potential of publicity. ... To confirm this, one need 
only look at the epithets ... he attaches to his manufacturers and their products. 
Shamelessly he dubs them: the renowned Victorine; Plaisir, an illustrious hair- 
dresser; Staub, the most celebrated tailor of his age; Gay, af mmous haberdasher 
... on the Rue de la Michodiere (even giving the address!); . . . 'the cuisine of the 
Rocher de Cancale, . . . the premier restaurant in Paris . . . , which is to say, in the 
entire world.'''" H. Clouzot and R.-H. Valensi, Le Paris de "La Comedie hu- 
maine": Balzac et ses fournisseurs (Paris, 1926), pp. 7-9 and 177-179. [A9,2] 

The Passage Vero-Dodat connects the Rue Croix-des-Petits-Champs with the Rue 
Jean- Jacques-Rousseau. In the latter, around 1840, Cabet held his meetings in his 
rooms. We get an idea of the tone of these gatherings from Martin Nadaud's 
Memoir es de Leonard, anciengarqon maqon: "He was still holding in his hand the 
towel and razor he had just been using. He seemed filled with joy at seeing us 
respectably attired, with a serious air: 'Ah, Messieurs,' he said (he did not say 
'Citizens'), 'if your adversaries could only see you now! You would disarm their 
criticisms. Your dress and your bearing are those of well-bred men.'" Cited in 
Charles Benoist, "L'Hommede 1848," part 2, Revue des deux mondes (February 
1, 1914), pp. 641-642. — It was characteristic of Cabet to believe that workers 
need not busy themselves with writing. [A9,3] 

Street-salons: "The largest and most favorably situated among these [street- 
galleries] were tastefully decorated and sumptuously furnished. The walls and 
ceilings were covered with . . . rare marble, gilding, . . . mirrors, and paintings. 
The windows were adorned with splendid hangings and with curtains embroidered 
in marvelous patterns. Chairs, fauteuils, sofas . . . offered comfortable seating to 
tired strollers. Finally, there were artistically designed objects, antique cabi- 
nets, . . . glass cases full of curiosities, . . . porcelain vases containing fresh flow- 
ers, aquariums full of live fish, and aviaries inhabited by rare birds. These 
completed the decoration of the street-galleries, which lit up the evening with . . . 
gilt candelabras and crystal lamps. The government had wanted the streets be- 
longing to the people of Paris to surpass in magnificence the drawing rooms of the 
most powerful sovereigns. . . . First thing in the morning, the street-galleries are 
turned over to attendants who air them out, sweep them carefully, brush, dust, 
and polish the furniture, and everywhere impose the most scrupulous cleanliness. 
Then, depending on the season, the windows are either opened or closed, and 

either a fire is lit or the blinds are lowered. . . . Between nine and ten o'clock this 
cleaning is all completed, and passersby, until then few and far between, begin to 
appear in greater numbers. Entrance to the galleries is strictly forbidden to any- 
one who is dirty or to carriers of heavy loads; smoking and spitting are likewise 
prohibited here." Tony Moilin, Paris en I'mn 2000 (Paris, 1869), pp. 26-29 ("As- 
pect des rues-galeries"). [A9a,l] 

The mmgfLsins de nouvemutes owe their existence to the freedom of trade estab- 
lished by Napoleon I. "Of those establishments, famous in 1817, which gave them- 
selves names like La Fille Mai Gardee, Le Diable Boiteux, Le Masque de Fer, or 
Les Deux Magots, not one remains. Many of those which replaced them under 
Louis Philippe also foundered later on — like La Belle Fermiere and La Chaussee 
d'Antin. Or else they were sold at little profit — like Le Coin de Rue and Le Pauvre 
Diable." G. d'Avenel, "Le Mecanisme de la vie moderne," part 1: "Les Grands 
Magasins," Revue des deux mondes (July 15, 1894), p. 334. [A9a,2] 

The office of Philipon's weekly Lm Cmricttture was in the Passage Vero-Dodat. 


Passage du Caire. Erected after Napoleon's return from Egypt. Contains some 
evocations of Egypt in the reliefs — sphinx-like heads over the entrance, among 
other things. "The arcades are sad, gloomy, and always intersecting in a manner 
disagreeable to the eye. . . . They seem . . . destined to house lithographers' stu- 
dios and binders' shops, as the adjoining street is destined for the manufacture of 
straw hats; pedestrians generally avoid them." Elie Berthet, "Rue et Passage du 
Caire," Pmris chez soi (Paris <1854>), p . 362. [ AlO,l] 

"In 1798 and 1799, the Egyptian campaign lent frightful importance to the fashion 
for shawls. Some generals in the expeditionary army, taking advantage of the 
proximity of India, sent home shawls ... of cashmere to their wives and lady 
friends. . . . From then on, the disease that might be called cashmere fever took on 
significant proportions. It began to spread during the Consulate, grew greater 
under the Empire, became gigantic during the Restoration, reached colossal size 
under the July Monarchy, and has finally assumed Sphinx-like dimensions since 
the February Revolution of 1848." Pmris chez soi (Paris), p. 139 (A. Durand, 
"Chales — Cachemires indiens et francais"). Contains an interview with M. Mar- 
tin, 39 Rue Richelieu, proprietor of a store called The Indians; reports that shawls 
which earlier were priced between 1,500 and 2,000 francs can now be bought for 
800 to 1,000 francs. [A10.2] 

From Brazier, Gabriel, and Dumersan, Les Pmssmges et les rues, vaudeville in one 
act, presented for the first time, in Paris, at the Theatre des Varietes on March 7, 
1827 (Paris, 1827). — Beginning of a song by the shareholder Dulingot: 

For the arcades, I form 
Continual refrains of thanks: 

In the Passage Delorme 

I've put a hundred thousand francs. (Pp. 5-6) 

"I hear they want to roof all the streets of Paris with glass. That will make for 
lovely hothouses; we will live in them like melons" (p. 19). [A10,3] 

From Girard, Des Tombemux, ou De I'Influence des institutions funebres sur les 
moeurs (Paris, 1801): "The new Passage du Caire, near the Rue Saint-Denis, . . . 
is paved in part with funerary stones, on which the Gothic inscriptions and the 
emblems have not yet been effaced." The author wishes to draw attention here to 
the decline of piety. Cited in Edouard Fournier, Chroniques et legendes des rues 
de Pmris (Paris, 1864), p. 154. [A10,4] 

Brazier, Gabriel, and Dumersan, Les Pmssm,ges et les rues, on L* Guerre declmree, 
vaudeville in one act, performed for the first time, in Paris, at the Theatre des 
Varietes on March 7, 1827 (Paris, 1827). — The party of arcades-adversaries is 
composed ofM. Duperron, umbrella merchant; Mme. Duhelder, wife of a carriage 
provider; M. Mouffetard, hatter; M. Blancmanteau, merchant and manufacturer 
of clogs; and Mme. Dubac, rentier — each one coming from a different part of 
town. M. Dulingot, who has bought stock in the arcades, has championed their 
canse. His lawyer is M. Pour; that of his opponents, M. Contre. In the second to 
last (fourteenth) scene, M. Contre appears at the head of a column of streets, 
which are decked with banners proclaiming their names. Among them are the Rue 
aux Ours, Rue Bergere, Rue du Croissant, Rue du Puits-qui-Parle, Rue du 
Grand-Hurleur. Likewise in the next scene — a procession of arcades with their 
banners: Passage du Saumon, Passage de I'Ancre, Passage du Grand-Cerf, Pas- 
sage du Pont-Neuf , Passage de I'Opera, Passage du Panorama <sic> . In the follow- 
ing scene, the last (sixteenth), Lutece 12 emerges from the bowels of the earth, at 
first in the guise of an old woman. In her presence, M. Contre takes up the defense 
of the streets against the arcades. "One hundred forty-four arcades open their 
mouths wide to devour our customers, to siphon off the ever-rising flow of our 
crowds, both active and idle. And you want us streets of Paris to ignore this clear 
infringement of our ancient rights! No, we demand . . . the interdiction of our one 
hundred forty-four opponents and, in addition, fifteen million, five hundred thou- 
sand francs in damages and interest" (p. 29). The argument by M. Pour in favor of 
the arcades takes the form of verse. An extract: 

We whom they would banish — we are more than useful. 
Have we not, by virtue of our cheerful aspect, 
Encouraged all of Paris in the fashion 
Of bazaars, those marts so famous in the East? 

And what are these walls the crowd admires? 
These ornaments, these columns above all? 
You'd think you were in Athens; and this temple 
Is erected to commerce by good taste. (Pp. 29-3#) 

Lutece arbitrates the differences: '"The affair is settled. Genies of light, hearken 
to my voice.' (At this moment the whole gallery is suddenly illuminated by gas- 
light.)" (p. 31). A ballet of streets and arcades concludes the vaudeville. [A10a,l] 

"I do not at all hesitate to write — as monstrous as this may seem to serious writers 
on art — that it was the sales clerk who launched lithography. . . . Condemned to 
imitations of Raphael, to Briseises by Regnault, it would perhaps have died; the 
sales clerk saved it." Henri Bouchot, La Lithographie (Paris <1895>), pp. 50-51. 


In the Passage Vivienne 

She told me: "I'm from Vienna." 

And she added: 

"I live with my uncle, 

The brother of Papa! 

I take care of his furuncle — 

It has its charms, this fate." 

I promised to meet the damsel again 

In the Passage Bonne-Nouvelle; 

But in the Passage Brady 

I waited in vain. 

And there you have it: arcade amours! 

Narcisse Lebeau, cited by Leon-Paul Fargue, "Cafes de Paris," part 2 [in Vu, 9, 
no. 416 (March 4, 1936)]. [A11.2] 

"There seems no reason, in particular, at the first and most literal glance, why the 
story should be called after the Old Curiosity Shop. Only two of the characters 
have anything to do with such a shop, and they leave it for ever in the first few 
pages .... But when we feel the situation with more fidelity we realize that this title 
is something in the nature of a key to the whole Dickens romance. His tales always 
started from some splendid hint in the streets. And shops, perhaps the most poeti- 
cal of all things, often set his fancy galloping. Every shop, in fact, was to him the 
door of romance. Among all the huge serial schemes . . . it is a matter of wonder 
that he never started an endless periodical called the The Street, and divided it 
into shops. He could have written an exquisite romance called The Baker's Shop; 
another called The Chemist's Shop; another called The Oil Shop, to keep company 
with The Old Curiosity S/iop." G. K. Chesterton, Dickens, trans. Laurent and 
Martin-Dupont (Paris, 1927), pp. 82-83. 13 [A11.3] 

"One may wonder to what extent Fourier himself believed in his fantasies. In his 
manuscripts he sometimes complains of critics who take literally what is meant as 
figurative, andwhoinsist moreover on speaking of his 'studied whims.' There may 
have been at least a modicum of deliberate charlatanism at work in all this — an 
attempt to launch his system hy means of the tactics of commercial advertising, 

which had begun to develop. "F. Armani and R. Maublanc, Fourier (Paris, 1937), 
vol. 1, p. 158. D Exhibitions D [Alla,l] 

Proudhon's confession near the end of his life (in his bookDe Im justice 1 ' 1 — com- 
pare with Fourier's vision of the phalanstery): "It has been necessary for me to 
become civilized. But need I approve? The little bit of civilizing I've received 
disgusts me. ... I hate houses of more than one story, houses in which, by contrast 
with the social hierarchy, the meek are raised on high while the great are settled 
near the ground." Cited in Armand Cuvillier, Marx et Proudhon: A Im. lumiere du 
Mmrxisme, vol. 2, part 1 (Paris, 1937), p. 211. [Alla,2] 

Blanqui: "'I wore,' he says, 'the first tricolored cockade of 1830, made by Ma- 
dame Bodin in the Passage du Commerce.'" Gustave Geffroy, L'Enferme (Paris, 
1897), p. 240. [Alla,3] 

Baudelaire can still write of "a book as dazzling as an Indian handkerchief or 
shawl." Baudelaire, L'Art rommntique (Paris), p. 192 ("Pierre Dupont"). 15 


The Crauzat Collection possesses a beautiful reproduction of the Passage des 
Panoramas from 1808. Also found there: a prospectus for a bootblacking shop, in 
which it is a question mainly of Puss in Boots. [ Al la, 5] 

Baudelaire to his mother on December 25, 1861, concerning an attempt to pawn a 
shawl: "I was told that, with the approach of New Year's Day, there was a glut of 
cashmeres in the stores, and that they were trying to discourage the public from 
bringing any more in." Charles Baudelaire, Lettres a sm mere (Paris, 1932), 
p. 198. [Alla,6] 

"Our epoch will he the link between the age of isolated forces rich in original 
creativeness and that of the uniform but leveling force which gives monotony to its 
products, casting them in masses, and following out one unifying idea — the ulti- 
mate expression of social communities." H. de Balzac, L'lllustre Gmudissmrt, ed. 
Calmann-Levy (Paris, 1837), p. I. 16 [Alla,7] 

Sales at Au Bon Marche, in the years 1852 to 1863, rose from 450,000 to 
7 million francs. The rise in profits could have been considerably less. "High 
turnover and small profi ts" was at that time a new principle, one that accorded 
with the two dominant forces in operation: the multitude of purchasers and the 
mass of goods. In 1852, Boucicaut allied himself with Vidau, the proprietor of Au 
Bon Marche, the magasin de nouveaute's. "The originality consisted in selling 
guaranteed merchandise at discount prices. Items, fi rst of all, were marked with 
fixed prices, another bold innovation which did away with bargaining and with 
'process sales' — that is to say, with gauging the price of an article to the physiog- 
nomy of the buyer; then the 'return' was instituted, allowing the customer to 

Au Bon Marche department store in Paris. Woodcut, ca. 1880. See A12,l. 

cancel his purchase at will; and, finally, employees were paid almost entirely by 
commission on sales. These were the constitutive elements of the new organiza- 
tion." George d'Avenel, "Le Mecanisme de la vie moderne: Les Grands Maga- 
sins," Revue des deux mundes, 124 (Paris, 1894), pp. 335-336. [A12,l] 

The gain in time realized for the retail business by the abolition of bargaining 
may have played a role initially in the calculations of department stores. [ A12,2] 

A chapter, "Shawls, Caslnneres," in Borne's Industrie- Ausstellung im Louvre 
< Exhibition of Industry in the Louvre >. Ludwig Borne, Gesammelte Schriften 
(Hamburg and Frankfurt am Main, 1862), vol. 3, p. 260. [A12,3] 

The physiognomy of the arcade emerges with Baudelaire in a sentence at the 
beginning of "Le Joueur genereux": "It seemed to me odd that I could have passed 
this enchanting haunt so often without suspecting that here was the entrance." 
<Baudelaire, Oeuvres, ed. Y.-G. LeDantec (Paris, 1931),> vol. 1, p. 456." [A12,4] 

Specifics of the department store: the customers perceive themselves as a mass; 
they are confronted with an assortment of goods; they take in all the floors at a 
glance; they pay fixed prices; they can make exchanges. [A12,5] 

"In those parts of the city where the theaters and public walks . . . are located, 
where therefore the majority of foreigners live and wander, there is hardly a 
building without a shop. It takes only a minute, only a step, for the forces of 
attraction to gather; a minute later, a step further on, and the passerby is standing 
before a different shop. . . . One's attention is spirited away as though by violence, 
and one has no choice but to stand there and remain looking up until it returns. 
The name of the shopkeeper, the name of his merchandise, inscribed a dozen times 
on placards that hang on the doors and above the windows, beckon from all sides; 
the exterior of the archway resembles the exercise book of a schoolboy who writes 
the few words of a paradigm over and over. Fabrics are not laid out in samples but 
are hung before door and window in completely unrolled bolts. Often they are 
attached high up on the third story and reach down in sundry folds all the way to 
the pavement. The shoemaker has painted different-colored shoes, ranged in rows 
like battalions, across the entire facade of his building. The sign for the locksmiths 
is a six-foot-high gold-plated key; the giant gates of heaven could require no larger. 
On the hosiers' shops are painted white stockings four yards high, and they will 
startle you in the dark when they loom like ghosts. . . . But foot and eye are 
arrested in a nobler and more charming fashion by the paintings displayed before 
many storefronts. . . . These paintings are, not infrequently, true works of art, 
and if they were to hang in the Louvre, they would inspire in connoisseurs at least 
pleasure if not admiration. . . . The shop of a wigmaker is adorned with a picture 
that, to be sure, is poorly executed but distinguished by an amusing conception. 
Crown Prince Absalom hangs by his hair from a tree and is pierced by the lance of 
an enemy. Underneath runs the verse: 'Here you see Absalom in his hopes quite 

debunked, / Had he worn a peruke, he'd not be defunct.' Another . . . picture, 
representing a village maiden as she kneels to receive a garland of roses — token of 
her virtue — from the hands of a chevalier, ornaments the door of a milliner's 
shop." Ludwig Borne, Schilderungen *us Pmris (1822 und 1823), ch. 6 ("Die 
Laden" <Shops>), in Gesmmmelte Schriften (Hamburg and Frankfurt am Main, 
1862), vol. 3, pp. 46-49. [A12a] 

On Baudelaire's "religious intoxication of great cities":" 5 the department stores 
are temples consecrated to this intoxication. [A13] 




Fashion: Madam Death! Madam Death! 

— Giacomo Leopardi, "Dialogue between Fashion and Death" 1 

Nothing dies; all is transformed. 

— Honore de Balzac, Rnsees, sujets, fragments (Paris, 1910), p. 46 

And boredom is the grating before which the courtesan teases death. 
□ Ennui D [Bl,l] 

Similarity of the arcades to the indoor arenas in which one learned to ride a 
bicycle. In these halls the figure of the woman assumed its most seductive aspect: 
as cyclist. That is how she appears on contemporary posters. Cheret the painter 
of this feminine pulchritude. The costume of the cyclist, as an early and uncon- 
scious prefiguration of sportswear, corresponds to the dream prototypes that, a 
litde before or a little later, are at work in the factory or the automobile. Just as 
the first factory buildings cling to the traditional form of the residential dwelling, 
and just as the first automobile chassis imitate carriages, so in the clothing of the 
cyclist the sporting expression still wresdes with the inherited pattern of elegance, 
and the fruit of this struggle is the grim sadistic touch which made this ideal 
image of elegance so incomparably provocative to the male world in those days. 
D Dream Houses D [Bl,2] 

"In these years [around 1880], not only Joes the Renaissance fashion begin to do 
mischief, but on the other side a new interest in sports — above all, in equestrian 
sports — arises among women, and together these two tendencies exert an influence 
on fashion from quite different directions. The attempt to reconcile these senti- 
ments dividing the female soul yields results that, in the years 1882-1885, are 
original if not always beautiful. To improve matters, dress designers simplify and 
take in the waist as much as possible, while allowing the skirt an amplitude all the 
more rococo." 70 Jmhre deutsche Mode (1925), pp. 84-87. [Bl,3] 

Here fashion has opened the business of dialectical exchange between woman 
and ware — between carnal pleasure and the corpse. The clerk, death, tall and 

loutish, measures the century by the yard, serves as mannequin himself to save 
costs, and manages single-handedly the liquidation that in French is called revolu- 
tion. For fashion was never anything other than the parody of the motley cadaver, 
provocation of death through the woman, and bitter colloquy with decay whis- 
pered between shrill bursts of mechanical laughter. That is fashion. And that is 
why she changes so quickly; she titillates death and is already something differ- 
ent, something new, as he casts about to crush her. For a hundred years she holds 
her own against him. Now, finally, she is on the point of quitting the field. But he 
erects on the banks of a new Lethe, which rolls its asphalt stream through 
arcades, the armature of the whores as a battle memorial. □ Revolution □ Love D 


Squares, o square in Paris, infinite showplace, 

where the modiste Madame Lamort 

winds and binds the restless ways of the world, 

those endless ribbons, to ever-new 

creations of bow, frill, flower, cockade, and fruit — 

R. M. Rilke, Duineser Elegien (Leipzig, 1923), p. 23. 2 [Bl,5] 

"Nothing has a place of its own, save fashion appoints that place." L'Esprit d'Al- Kmrr: <Pensees extrmites de ses oeuvres completes) (Paris, 1877), p. 129. 
"If a woman of taste, while undressing at night, should find herself constituted in 
reality as she has pretended to be during the day, I like to think she'd be discov- 
ered next morning drowned in her own tears." Alphonse Karr, cited in F. Th. 
Vischer, Mode und Zynismus (Stuttgart, 1879), pp. 106-107. [Bl,6] 

With Karr, there appears a rationalist theory of fashion that is closely related to 
the rationalist theory of the origin of religions. The motive for instituting long 
skirts, for example, he conceives to be the interest certain women would have 
had in concealing an unlovely <foot>. Or he denounces, as the origin of certain 
types of hats and certain hairstyles, the wish to compensate f or thin hair. [B 1 , 7] 

Who still knows, nowadays, where it was that in the last decade of the previous 
century women would offer to men their most seductive aspect, the most inti- 
mate promise of their figure? In the asphalted indoor arenas where people 
learned to ride bicycles. The woman as cyclist competes with the cabaret singer 
for the place of honor on posters, and gives to fashion its most daring line. 


For the philosopher, the most interesting thing about fashion is its extraordinary 
anticipations. It is well known that art will often — for example, in pictures — pre- 
cede the perceptible reality by years. It was possible to see streets or rooms that 
shone in all sorts of fiery colors long before technology, by means of illuminated 
signs and other arrangements, actually set them under such a light. Moreover, 
the sensitivity of the individual artist to what is coming certainly far exceeds that 

of the grande dame. Yet fashion is in much steadier, much more precise contact 
with the coming thing, thanks to the incomparable nose which the feminine 
collective has for what lies waiting in the future. Each season brings, in its newest 
creations, various secret signals of things to come. Whoever understands how to 
read these semaphores would know in advance not only about new currents in 
the arts but also about new legal codes, wars, and revolutions. 3 — Here, surely, 
lies the greatest charm of fashion, but also the difficulty of making the charming 
fruitful. [BlaJ] 

"Whether you translate Russian fairy tales, Swedish family sagas, or English 
picaresque novels — you will always come back in the end, when it is a question of 
setting the tone for the masses, to France, not because it is always the truth but 
because it will always be the fashion." <Karl> Gutzkow, Briefe aus Paris, vol. 2 
<Leipzig, 1842>, pp. 227-228. Each time, what sets the tone is without doubt the 
newest, but only where it emerges in the medium of the oldest, the longest past, 
the most ingrained. This spectacle, the unique self -construction of the newest in 
the medium of what has been, makes for the true dialectical theater of fashion. 
Only as such, as the grandiose representation of this dialectic, can one appreciate 
the singular books of Grandville, which created a sensation toward the middle of 
the century. When Grandville presents a new fan as the "fan of Iris" and his 
drawing suggests a rainbow, or when the Milky Way appears as an avenue 
illuminated at night by gaslamps, or when "the moon (a self-portrait)" reposes on 
fashionable velvet cushions instead of on clouds* — at such moments we first 
come to see that it is precisely in this century, the most parched and imagination- 
starved, that the collective dream energy of a society has taken refuge with 
redoubled vehemence in the mute impenetrable nehula of fashion, where the 
understanding carmot follow. Fashion is the predecessor — no, the eternal dep- 
uty — of Surrealism. [Bla,2] 

A pair of lascivious engravings by Charles Vernier entitled A Wedding on Wheels — 
showing the departure and the return. The bicycle offered unsuspected possibili- 
ties for the depiction of the raised skirt. [Bla,3] 

A definitive perspective on fashion follows solely from the consideration that to 
each generation the one immediately preceding it seems the most radical anti- 
aphrodisiac imaginable. In this judgment it is not so far wrong as might be 
supposed. Every fashion is to some extent a bitter satire on love; all sexual 
perversities are suggested in every fashion by the most ruthless means; every 
fashion is filled with secret resistances to love. It is worthwhile reflecting on the 
following observation by Grand- Carteret, superficial though it is: "It is in scenes 
from the amorous life that one may in fact perceive the full ridiculousness of 
certain fashions. Aren't men and women grotesque in these gestures and atti- 
tudes — in the tufted forelock (already extravagant in itself), in the top hat and the 
nipped- waisted frockcoat, in the shawl, in the grandes pamelas, in the dainty fabric 
boots?" Thus, the confrontation with the fashions of previous generations is a 

Le Pont desplanetes (Interplanetary Bridge). Engraving by Grandville, 1844. See Bla,2. 

matter of far greater importance than we ordinarily suppose. And one of the 
most significant aspects of historical costuming is that — above all, in the thea- 
ter — it undertakes such a confrontation. Beyond the theater, the question of 
costume reaches deep into the life of art and poetry, where fashion is at once 
preserved and overcome. [Bla,4] 

A kindred problem arose with the advent of new velocities, which gave life an 
altered rhythm. This latter, too, was first tried out, as it were, in a spirit of play. 
The loop-the-loop came on the scene, and Parisians seized on this entertainment 
with a frenzy. A chronicler notes around 1810 that a lady squandered 75 francs in 
one evening at the Pare de Montsouris, where at that time you could ride those 
looping cars. The new tempo of life is often announced in the most unforeseen 
ways. For example, in posters. "These images of a day or an hour, bleached by 
the elements, charcoaled by urchins, scorched by the sun — although others are 
sometimes collected even before they have dried — symbolize to a higher degree 
even than the newspapers the sudden, shock-filled, multiform life that carries us 
away." Maurice Talmeyr, La Cite du sang (Paris, 1901), p. 269. In the early days 
of the poster, there was as yet no law to regulate the posting of bills or to provide 
protection for posters and indeed from posters; so one could wake up some 
morning to find one's window placarded. From time immemorial this enigmatic 
need for sensation has found satisfaction in fashion. But in its ground it will be 
reached at last only by theological inquiry, for such inquiry bespeaks a deep 
affective attitude toward historical process on the part of the human being. It is 
tempting to connect this need for sensation to one of the seven deadly sins, and it 
is not surprising that a chronicler adds apocalyptic prophecies to this connection 

and foretells a time when people will have been blinded by the effects of too 
much electric light and maddened by the tempo of news reporting. From Jacques 
Fabien, Paris en songe (Paris, 1863). [B2,l] 

"On October 4, 1856, the Gymnasium Theater presented a play entitled Les Toi- 
lettes Tmpageuses <The Flashy Dressers>. It was the heyday of the crinoline, and 
puffed-out women were in fashion. The actress playing the leading role, having 
grasped the satirical intentions of the author, wore a dress whose skirt, exagger- 
ated by design, had a fullness that was comical and almost ridiculous. The day 
after opening night, she was asked by more than twenty fine ladies to lend her 
dress as a model, and eight days later the crinoline had doubled in size." Maxime 

"Fashion is the recherche — the always vain, often ridiculous, sometimes danger- 
ous quest — for a superior ideal beauty." Du Camp, Paris, vol. 6, p. 294. [B2,3] 

The epigraph from Balzac is well suited to unfolding the temporality of hell: to 
showing how this time does not recognize death, and how fashion mocks death; 
how the acceleration of traffic and the tempo of news reporting (which conditions 
the quick succession of newspaper editions) aim at eliminating all discontinuities 
and sudden ends ; and how death as caesura belongs together with all the straight 
lines of divine temporality. — Were there fashions in antiquity? Or did the 
"authority of the frame" 5 preclude them? [B2,4] 

"She was everybody's contemporary." <Marcel> Jouhandeau, Prudence Haute- 
chaume (Paris, 1927), p. 129. To be contemporaine de tout le monde — that is the 
keenest and most secret satisfaction that fashion can offer a woman. [B2,5] 

An emblem of the power of fashion over the city of Paris: "I have purchased a 
map of Paris printed on a pocket handkerchief." Gutzkow, Briefe aus Paris, vol. 1 

Apropos of the medical discussion concerning the crinoline: Some people thought 
to justify its use, together with that of the petticoat, by noting "the agreeable and 
salutary coolness which the limbs enjoyed underneath. . . . Among doctors, [how- 
ever,] it is acknowledged that this celebrated coolness has already led to chills, and 
these have occasioned the unfortunately premature end of a situation which it was 
the original purpose of the crinoline to conceal." F. Th. Vischer, Kritische Gmnge, 
new series, no. 3 (Stuttgart, 1861), p. 100: "Verniinftige Gedanken iiber die jetzige 
Mode" <Reasonable Opinions on Current Fashions). [B2a,2] 

Du Camp, Paris, vol. 6<Paris, 1875>, p. 192. 


<Leipzig, 1842>, p. 82. 


It was "madness for the French fashions of the Revolution and the First Empire to 
mimic Greek proportions with clothing cut and sewn in the modern manner." 
Vischer, "Verniinftige Gedanken iiber die jetzige Mode," p. 99. [B2a,3] 

Des damesd'un demi-raoral^raaisn'aynntpastledeini-jiipes 

Fashionable courtesans wearing crinolines. Lithograph by Honore Daumier, 1855. Tlie 
caption reads: "Ladies of the demi-monde, but havingno demi-skirts." See B2,2. 

A knit scarf — a brightly striped muffler — worn also, in muted colors, by men. 


F. Th. Vischer on the men's fashion of wide sleeves that fall below the wrist: "What 
we have here are no longer arms but the rudiments of wings, stumps of penguin 
wings, fish fins. The movement of these shapeless appendages resembles the ges- 
ticulations — the sliding, jerking, paddling — of a fool or simpleton." Vischer, 
"Vernunftige Gedanken iiber die jetzige Mode," p. 111. [B2a,5] 

Important political critique of fashion from the standpoint of the bourgeois: 
"When the author of these reasonable opinions first saw, boarding a train, a 
young man wearing the newest style of shirt collar, he honestly thought that he 
was looking at a priest; for this white band encircles the neck at the same height 
as the well-known collar of the Catholic cleric, and moreover the long smock was 
black. On recognizing a layman in the very latest fashion, he immediately under- 
stood all that this shirt collar signifies: 'O, for us everything, everything is one — 
concordats included! And why not? Should we clamor for enlightenment like 
noble youths? Is not hierarchy more distinguished than the leveling effected by a 
shallow spiritual liberation, which in the end always aims at disturbing the pleas- 
ure of refined people?' — It may be added that this collar, in tracing a neat little 

line around the neck, gives its wearer the agreeable air of someone freshly be- 
headed, which accords so well with the character of the blase." To this is joined 
the violent reaction against purple. Vischer, "Vemirnftige Gedanken iiber die 
jetzige Mode," p. 1 12. [B2a,6] 

On the reaction of 1850-1860: "To show one's colors is considered ridiculous; to 
he strict is looked on as childish. In such a situation, how could dress not become 
equally colorless, flabby, and, at the same time, narrow?" Vischer, p. 117. He thus 
brings the crinoline into relation with that fortified "imperialism which spreads 
out and puffs up exactly like its image here, and which, as the last and strongest 
expression of the reflux of all the tendencies of the year 1848, settles its dominion 
like a hoop skirt over all aspects, good and had, justified and unjustified, of the 
revolution" (p. 119). [B2a,7] 

"At bottom, these things are simultaneously free and unfree. It is a twilight zone 
where necessity and humor interpenetrate. . . . The more fantastic a form, the 
more intensely the clear and ironic consciousness works by the side of the servile 
will. And this consciousness guarantees that the folly will not last; the more con- 
sciousness grows, the nearer comes the time when it acts, when it turns to deed, 
when it throws off the fetters." Vischer, pp. 122-123. [B2a,8] 

One of the most important texts for elucidating the eccentric, revolutionary, and 
surrealist possibilities of fashion — a text, above all, which establishes thereby the 
connection of Surrealism to Grandville and others — is the section on fashion in 
Apollinaire's Poete assassine (Paris, 1927), pp. 74ff.° [B2a,9] 

How fashion takes its cue from everything: Programs for evening clothes ap- 
peared, as if for the newest symphonic music. In 1901, in Paris, Victor Prouve 
exhibited a formal gown with the title, "Riverbank in Spring." [B2a,10] 

Hallmark of the period's fashions: to intimate a body that never knows full 
nakedness. [B3,l] 

"Around 1890 people discover that silk is no longer the most elegant material for 
street clothes; henceforth it is allotted the previously unknown function of lining. 
From 1870 to 1890, clothing is extraordinarily expensive, and changes in fashion 
are accordingly limited in many cases to prudent alterations by which new apparel 
can be derived from remodeling the old." 70 Jmhre deutsche Mode (1925), p. 71. 


"1873 . . . , when the giant skirts that stretched over cushions attached to the 
derriere, with their gathered draperies, their pleated frills, their embroidery, and 
their ribbons, seem to have issued less from the workshop of a tailor than from 

that of an upholsterer." J. W. Samson, Die Frmuenmode der Gegenwmrt (Berlin 
and Cologne, 1927), pp. 8-9. [B3,3] 

No immortalizing so unsettling as that of the ephemera and the fashionable 
forms preserved for us in the wax museum. And whoever has once seen her 
must, like Andre Breton, lose his heart to the female figure in the Musee Grevin 
who adjusts her garter in the corner of a loge. <Breton,> Nadja <Paris, 1928>, 
p. 199. 7 ' [B3,4] 

"The flower trimmings of large white lilies or water lilies with stems of rush, which 
look so charming in any coiffure, unintentionally remind one of delicate, gently 
floating sylphids and naiades. Just so, the fiery brunette cannot adorn herself 
more delightfully than with fruit braided in graceful little branches — cherries, red 
currants, even bunches of grapes mingled with ivy and flowering grasses — or than 
with long vivid red velvet fuchsias, whose leaves, red-veined and as though tinged 
with dew, form a crown; also at her disposal is the very lovely cmctus speciosus, 
with its long white filaments. In general, the flowers chosen for decorating the hair 
are quite large; we saw one such headdress of very picturesque and beautiful white 
roses entwined with large pansies and ivy branches, or rather boughs. The ar- 
rangement of the gnarled and tendriled branches was so felicitous that it seemed 
nature itself had lent a hand — long branches bearing buds and long stems swayed 
at the sides with the slightest motion." Der Bmztir, third year (Berlin, 1857), p. 11 
( Veronika von G . , "Die Mode"). [B3.5] 

The impression of the old-fashioned can arise only where, in a certain way, 
reference is made to the most topical. If the beginnings of modern architecture to 
some extent lie in the arcades, their antiquated effect on the present generation 
has exactly the same significance as the antiquated effect of a father on his son. 


In my formulation: "The eternal is in any case far more the ruffle on a dress than 
some idea." 8 D Dialectical Image D [B3,7] 

In fetishism, sex does away with the boundaries separating the organic world 
from the inorganic. Clothing and jewelry are its allies. It is as much at home with 
what is dead as it is with living flesh. The latter, moreover, shows it the way to 
establish itself in the former. Hair is a frontier region lying between the two 
kingdoms of sexus. Something different is disclosed in the drunkenness of pas- 
sion: the landscapes of the body. These are already no longer animated, yet are 
still accessible to the eye, which, of course, depends increasingly on touch and 
smell to be its guides through these reahns of death. Not seldom in the dream, 
however, there are swelling breasts that, like the earth, are all appareled in woods 
and rocks, and gazes have sent their life to the bottom of glassy lakes that 
slumber in the valleys. These landscapes are traversed by paths which lead 

sexuality into the world of the inorganic. Fashion itself is only another medium 
enticing it still more deeply into the universe of matter. [B3,8] 

'"This year,' said Tristouse, 'fashions are bizarre and common, simple and full of 
fantasy. Any material from nature's domain can now be introduced into the com- 
position of women's clothes. I saw a charming dress made of corks. ... A major 
designer is thinking about launching tailor-made outfits made of old bookbindings 
done in calf. . . . Fish bones are being worn a lot on hats. One often sees delicious 
young girls dressed like pilgrims of Saint James of Compostella; their outfits, as is 
fitting, are studded with coquilles Saint-Jacques. Steel, wool, sandstone, and files 
have suddenly entered the vestmentary arts. . . . Feathers now decorate not only 
hats but shoes and gloves; and next year they'll be on umbrellas. They're doing 
shoes in Venetian glass and hats in Baccarat crystal. ... I forgot to tell you that 
last Wednesday I saw on the boulevards on old dowager dressed in mirrors stuck 
to fabric. The effect was sumptuous in the sunlight. You'd have thought it was a 
gold mine out for a walk. Later it started raining and the lady looked like a silver 
mine. . . . Fashion is becoming practical and no longer looks down on anything. It 
ennobles everything. It does for materials what the Romantics did for words.'" 
Guillaume Apollinaire, Le Poete mssmssine, new edition (Paris, 1927), pp. 75-77. 9 


A caricaturist — circa 1867 — represents the frame of a hoop skirt as a cage in 
which a girl imprisons hens and a parrot. See Louis Sonolet, Lm Vie pmrisienne 
sous le Second Empire (Paris, 1929), p. 245. [B3a,2] 

"It was bathing in the sea . . . that struck the first blow against the solemn and 
cumbersome crinoline." Louis Sonolet, L« Vie pmrisienne sous le Second Empire 
(Paris, 1929), p. 247. [B3a,3] 

"Fashion consists only in extremes. Inasmuch as it seeks the extremes by nature, 
there remains for it nothing more, when it has abandoned some particular form, 
than to give itself to the opposite form." 70 Jahre deutsche Mode (1925), p. 51. Its 
uttermost extremes: frivolity and death. [B3a,4] 

"We took the crinoline to be the symbol of the Second Empire in France — of its 
overblown lies, its hollow and purse-proud impudence. It toppled . . . , but . . . 
just before the fall of the Empire, the Parisian world had time to indulge another 
side of its temperament in women's fashions, and the Republic did not disdain to 
follow its lead." F. Th. Vischer, Mode und Cynismus (Stuttgart, 1879), p. 6. The 
new fashion to which Vischer alludes is explained: "The dress is cut diagonally 
across the hody and stretched over . . . the helly" (p. 6). A little later he speaks of 
the women thus attired as "naked in their clothes" (p. 8). [B3a,5] 

Friedell explains, with regard to women, "that the history of their dress shows 
surprisingly few variations. It is not much more than a regular rotation of a few 

quickly altering, but also quickly reinstated, nuances: the length of the train, the 
height of the coiffure, the shortness of the sleeves, the fullness of the skirt, the 
placement of the neckline and of the waist. Even radical revolutions like the boy- 
ish haircuts fashionable today are only the 'eternal return of the same. '" Egon 
Friedell, Kidturgeschichte der Neuzeit, vol. 3 (Munich, 1931), p. 88. Women's 
fashions are thus distinguished, according to the author, from the more diverse 
and more categorical fashions for men. [B4,l] 

"Of all the promises made by <Etienne> Cabet's novel Voyage en lemrie <Voyage to 
Icaria>, at least one has been realized. Cabet had in fact tried to prove in the novel, 
which contains his system, that the commnnist state of the future could admit no 
product of the imagination and could suffer no change in its institutions. He had 
therefore banned from Icaria all fashion — particularly the capricious priestesses 
of fashion, the modistes — as well as goldsmiths and all other professions that 
serve luxury, and had demanded that dress, utensils, and the like should never 
be altered." Sigmund Englander, Geschichte der franzdsischen Arbeiter- 
Associmtionen (Hamburg, 1864), vol. 2, pp. 165-166. [B4,2] 

In 1828 the first performance of La Muette de Portici took place. 10 It is an undulat- 
ing musical extravaganza, an opera made of draperies, which rise and subside 
over the words. It must have had its success at a time when drapery was begin- 
ning its triumphal procession (at first, in fashion, as Turkish shawls). This revolt, 
whose premier task is to protect the king from its own effect, appears as a prelude 
to that of 1830 — to a revolution that was indeed no more than drapery covering 
a slight reshuffle in the ruling circles. [B4,3] 

Does fashion die (as in Russia, for example) because it can no longer keep up the 
tempo — at least in certain fields? [B4,4] 

Grandville's works are true cosmogonies of fashion. Part of his oeuvre could be 
entitled "The Struggle of Fashion with Nature." Comparison between Hogarth 
and Grandville. Grandville and Lautreamont. — What is the significance of the 
hypertrophy of captions in Grandville? [B4,5] 

"Fashion ... is a witness, but a witness to the history of the great world only, for in 
every country . . . the poor people have fashions as little as they have a history, 
and their ideas, their tastes, even their lives barely change. Without doubt, . . . 
public life is beginning to penetrate the poorer households, but it will take time." 
Eugene Montrue, Le XIX° siecle vecu pmr deuxfrmnquis (Paris), p. 241. [B4,6] 

The following remark makes it possible to recognize how fashion functions as 
camouflage for quite specific interests of the ruling class. "Rulers have a great 
aversion to violent changes. They want everything to stay the same — if possible, 
for a thousand years. If possible, the moon should stand still and the sun move 
no farther in its course. Then no one would get hungry any more and want 

dinner. And when the rulers have fired their shot, the adversary should no longer 
be permitted to fire; their own shot should be the last." Bertolt Brecht, "Funf 
Schwierigkeiten beim Schreiben der Wahrheit," Unsere £eit, 8, nos. 2-3 (Paris, 
Basel, Prague, April 1935), p. 32. [B4a,l] 

MacOrlan, who emphasizes the analogies to Surrealism in Grandville's work, 
draws attention in this connection to the work of Walt Disney, on which he com- 
ments: "It is not in the least morbid. In this it diverges from the humor of Grand- 
vine, which always bore within itself the seeds of death." <Pierre> MacOrlan, 
"Grandville ie precurseur," Arts et metiers grmphiques, 44 (December 15, 1934), 
<p. 24>. [B4a,2] 

"The presentation of a large couture collection lasts two to three hours. Each 
time in accord with the tempo to which the models are accustomed. At the close, 
a veiled bride traditionally appears." Helen Grund, Vom We sen der Mode (Mu- 
nich: Privately printed, 1935), p. 19. In this practice, fashion makes reference to 
propriety while serving notice that it does not stand still before it. [B4a,3] 

A contemporary fashion and its significance. In the spring of 1935, something 
new appeared in women's fashions: medium-sized embossed metal plaquettes, 
which were worn on jumpers or overcoats and which displayed the initial letters 
of the bearer's first name. Fashion thus profited from the vogue for badges which 
had arisen among men in the wake of the patriotic leagues. On the other hand, 
the progressive restrictions on the private sphere are here given expression. The 
name — and, to be sure, the first name — of persons unknown is published on a 
lapel. That it becomes easier thereby to make the acquaintance of a stranger is of 
secondary importance. [B4a,4] 

"The creators of fashions . . . like to frequent society and extract from its grand 
doings an impression of the whole; they take part in its artistic life, are present at 
premieres and exhibitions, and read the hooks that make a sensation. In other 
words, they are inspired hy the . . . ferment . . . which the busy present day can 
offer. But since no present moment is ever fully cut of f from the past, the latter also 
will offer attractions to the creator, . . . though only that which harmonizes with 
the reigning tone can be used. The toque tipped forward over the forehead, a style 
we owe to the Manet exhibition, demonstrates quite simply our new readiness to 
confront the end of the previous century." Helen Grund, Vom Wesen der Mode, 
p. 13. [B4a,5] 

On the publicity war between the fashion house and the fashion columnists: "The 
fashion writer's task is made easier by the fact that our wishes coincide. Yet it is 
made more difficult by the fact that no newspaper or magazine may regard as new 
what another has already published. From this dilemma, we and the fashion 
writer are saved only by the photographers and designers, who manage through 
the pose and lighting to bring out different aspects of a single piece of clothing. The 

most important magazines . . . have their own photo studios, which are equipped 
with all the latest technical and artistic refinements, and which employ highly 
talented specialized photographers. . . . But the publication of these documents is 
not permitted until the customer has made her choice, and that means usually four 
to six weeks after the initial showing. The reason for this measure? — The woman 
who appears in society wearing these new clothes will herself not be denied the 
effect of surprise." Helen Grund, Vom Wesen der Mode, pp. 21-22. [B5,l] 

According to the summary of the first six issues, the magazine published by 
Stephane Mallarme, Lm. Dernier e Mode (Paris, 1874), contains "a delightful spor- 
tive sketch, the result of a conversation with the marvelous naturalist Toussenel." 
Reproduction of this summary in Minotmure, 2, no. 6 (Winter 1935) <p. 27>. 


A biological theory of fashion that takes its cue from the evolution of the zebra to 
the horse, as described in the abridged Brehm (p. 771): u "This evolution spanned 
millions of years. . . . The tendency in horses is toward the creation of a first-class 
runner and courser. . . . The most ancient of the existing animal types have con- 
spicuously striped coats. Now, it is very remarkable that the external stripes of the 
zebra display a certain correspondence to the arrangement of the ribs and the 
vertebra inside. One can also determine very clearly the arrangement of these 
parts from the unique striping on the upper foreleg and upper hind leg. What do 
these stripes signify? A protective function can be ruled out. . . . The stripes have 
been . . . preserved despite their 'purposelessness and even unsuitableness,' and 
therefore they must . . . have a particular significance. Isn't it likely that we are 
dealing here with outward stimuli for internal responses, such as would be espe- 
cially active during the mating season? What can this theory contribute to our 
theme? Something of fundamental importance, I believe. — Ever since humanity 
passed from nakedness to clothing, 'senseless and nonsensical' fashion has played 
the role of wise nature. . . . And insofar as fashion in its mutations . . . prescribes 
a constant revision of all elements of the figure, ... it ordains for the woman a 
continual preoccupation with her beauty." Helen Grund, Vom Wesen der Mode, 
pp. 7-8. [B5,3] 

At the Paris world exhibition of 1900 there was a Palais du Costume, in which wax 
dolls arranged before a painted backdrop displayed the costumes of various peo- 
ples and the fashions of various ages. [B5a,l] 

"But as for us, we see . . . around us . . . the effects of confusion and waste inflicted 
by the disordered movement of the world today. Art knows no compromise with 
hurry. Our ideals are good for ten years! The ancient and excellent reliance on the 
judgment of posterity has been stupidly replaced by the ridiculous superstition of 
novelty, which assigns the most illusory ends to our enterprises, condemning them 
to the creation of what is most perishable, of what must be perishable by its 
nature: the sensation of newness. . . . Now, everything to be seen here has been 

enjoyed, has charmed and delighted through the centuries, and the whole glory of 
it calmly tells us: 'I AM NOTHING NET. Time may well spoil the material in which I 
exist; but for so long as it does not destroy me, I cannot be destroyed by the 
indifference or contempt of any man worthy of the name." Paul Valery, "Pream- 
bule" (preface to the catalogue of the exhibition "Italian Art from Cimabue to 
Tiepolo," at the Petit Palais, 1935), pp. iv, vii. 12 [B5a,2] 

"The ascendancy of the bourgeoisie works a change in women's wear. Clothing and 
hairstyles take on added dimensions . . . ; shoulders are enlarged by leg-of-mutton 
sleeves, and ... it was not long before the old hoop-petticoats came back into favor 
and full skirts were the thing. Women, thus accoutered, appeared destined for a 
sedentary life — family life — since their manner of dress had about it nothing that 
couldever suggest or seem to further the idea of movement. It was just the opposite 
with the advent of the Second Empire: family ties grew slack, and an ever-increas- 
ing luxury corrupted morals to such an extent that it became difficult to distin- 
guish an honest woman from a courtesan on the basis of clothing alone. Feminine 
attire had thus been transformed from head to toe. . . . Hoop skirts went the way 
of the accentuated rear. Everything that could keep women from remaining seated 
was encouraged; anything that could have impeded their walking was avoided. 
They wore their hair and their clothes as though they were to be viewed in profile. 
For the profile is the silhouette of someone . . . who passes, who is about to vanish 
from our sight. Dress became an image of the rapid movement that carries away 
the world." Charles Blanc, "Considerations sur le vetement des femmes" (Institut 
tie France, October 25, 1872), pp. 12-13. [B5a,3] 

"In order to grasp the essence of contemporary fashion, one need not recur to 
motives of an individual nature, such as . . . the desire for change, the sense of 
beauty, the passion for dressing up, the drive to conform. Doubtless such motives 
have, at various times, . . . played a part ... in the creation of clothes. . . . Never- 
theless, fashion, as we understand it today, has no individual motives but only a 
social motive, and it is an accurate perception of this social motive that determines 
the full appreciation of fashion's essence. This motive is the effort to distinguish 
the higher classes of society from the lower, or more especially from the middle 
classes .... Fashion is the barrier — continually raised anew hecause continually 
torn down — by which the fashionable world seeks to segregate itself from the 
middle region of society; it is the mad pursuit of that class vanity through which a 
single phenomenon endlessly repeats itself: the endeavor of one group to establish 
a lead, however minimal, over its pursuers, and the endeavor of the other group to 
make up the distance by immediately adopting the newest fashions of the leaders. 
The characteristic features of contemporary fashion are thus explained: above all, 
its origins in the upper circles and its imitation in the middle strata of society. 
Fashion moves from top to bottom, not vice versa. . . . An attempt by the middle 
classes to introduce a new fashion would . . . never succeed, though nothing would 
suit the upper classes better than to see the former with their own set of fashions. 
([Note:] Which does not deter them from looking for new designs in the sewer of 

the Parisian demi-monde and bringing out fashions that clearly bear the mark of 
their unseemly origins, as Fr. Vischer . . . has pointed out in his . . . widely cen- 
sured but, to my mind, . . . highly meritorious essay on fashion.) Hence the un- 
ceasing variation of fashion. No sooner have the middle classes adopted a newly 
introduced fashion than it . . . loses its value for the upper classes. . . . Thus, 
novelty is the indispensable condition for all fashion. . . . The duration of a fash- 
ion is inversely proportional to the swiftness of its diffusion; the ephemerality of 
fashions has increased in our day as the means for their diffusion have expanded 
via our perfected communications techniques. . . . The social motive referred to 
above explains, finally, the third characteristic feature of contemporary fashion: 
its . . . tyranny. Fashion comprises the outward criterion for judging whether or 
not one 'belongs in polite society.' Whoever does not repudiate it altogether must 
go along, even where he . . . firmly refuses some new development. . . . With this, a 
judgment is passed on fashion. ... If the classes that are weak and foolish enough 
to imitate it were to gain a sense of their own proper worth, ... it would be all up 
with fashion, and beauty could once again assume the position it has had with all 
those peoples who . . . did not feel the need to accentuate class differences through 
clothing or, where this occurred , were sensible enough to respect them." Rudolph 
von Jhering, Der Zweck im Recht, vol. 2 (Leipzig, 1883), pp. 234—238. 13 

[B6; B6a,l] 

On the epoch of Napoleon HI: "Making money becomes the object of an almost 
sensual fervor, and love becomes a financial concern. In the age of French Roman- 
ticism, the erotic ideal was the working girl who gives herself; now it is the tart who 
sells herself. ... A hoydenish nuance came into fashion: ladies wore collars and 
cravats, overcoats, dresses cut like tailcoats, . . . jackets a la Zouave, dolmans, 
walking sticks, monocles. Loud, harshly contrasting colors are preferred — for the 
coiffure as well: fiery red hair is very popular. . . . The paragon of fashion is the 
grmnde dmme who plays the cocotte." Egon Friedell, Kultur geschichte der 
Neuzeit, vol. 3 (Munich, 1931), p. 203. The "plebeian character" of this fashion 
represents, for the author, an "invasion . . . from below" by the nouveaux riches. 


"Cotton fahrics replace brocades and satins, . . . and before long, thanks to . . . 
the revolutionary spirit, the dress of the lower classes becomes more seemly and 
agreeable to the eye." Edouard Foucaud, Paris inventeur: Physiologie de I'indus- 
triefrm.nqm.ise (Paris, 1844), p. 64 (referring to the Revolution of 1789). [B6a,3] 

An assemblage which, on closer inspection, proves to be composed entirely of 
pieces of clothing together with assorted dolls' heads. Caption: "Dolls on chairs, 
mannequins with false necks, false hair, false attractions — voila Longchamp!" 
Cahinet des Estampes. [B6a,4] 

"If, in 1829, we were to enter the shops of Delisle, we would find a multitude 
of diverse fabrics: Japanese, Alhambresque, coarse oriental, stocoline, meotide, 

silenian, zinzoline, Chinese Bagazinkoff. . . . With the Revolution of 1830, . . . the 
court of fashion had crossed the Seine and the Chaussee d'Antin had replaced the 
aristocratic faubourg." Paul d'Ariste, Lm Vie et le monde du boulevmrd, 1830- 
1870 <Paris, 1930>, p. 227. [B6a,5] 

"The well-to-do bourgeois, as a friend of order, pays his suppliers at least once a 
year; but the man of fashion, the so-called lion, pays his tailor every ten years, if 
he pays him at all." Acht Tage in Paris (Paris, July 1855), p. 125. [B7,l] 

"It is I who invented tics. At present, the lorgnon has replaced them. . . . The tic 
involves closing the eye with a certain movement of the mouth and a certain move- 
ment of the coat. . . . The face of an elegant man should always have . . . something 
irritated and convulsive about it. One can attribute these facial agitations either to 
a natural satanism, to the fever of the passions, or finally to anything one likes." 
Pmris-Viveui; by the authors of the memoirs of Bilboquet [Taxile Delord] (Paris, 
1854), pp. 25-26. [B7,2] 

"The vogue for buying one's wardrobe in London took hold only among men; the 
fashion among women, even foreigners, has always been to be outfitted in Paris." 
Charles Seignobos, Histoire sincere de lm nation frm.ngm.ise (Paris, 1932), p. 402. 


Marcelin, the founder of Lm Vie Pmrisienne, has set forth "the four ages of the 
crinoline." [B7,4] 

The crinoline is "the unmistakable symbol of reaction on the part of an imperial- 
ism that spreads out and puffs up ... , and that . . . settles its dominion like a hoop 
skirt over all aspects, good and bad, justified and unjustified, of the revolu- 
tion. ... It seemed a caprice of the moment, and it has established itself as the 
emblem of a period, like the Second of December." 14 F. Th. Vischer, cited in 
Eduard Fuchs, Die Kmrikmtur der europmischen Volker (Munich <1921>), vol. 2, 
p. 156. [B7,5] 

In the early 1840s, there is a nucleus of modistes on the Rue Vivienne. [B7,6] 

Simmel calls attention to the fact that "the inventions of fashion at the present 
time are increasingly incorporated into the objective situation of labor in the 
economy. . . . Nowhere does an article first appear and then become a fashion; 
rather, articles are introduced for the express purpose of becoming fashions." 
The contrast put forward in the last sentence may be correlated, to a certain 
extent, with that between the feudal and bourgeois eras. Georg Simmel, Philoso- 
phische Kultur (Leipzig, 1911), p. 34 ("Die Mode"). 15 [B7,7] 

Sinunel explains "why women in general are the staunchest adherents of fash- 
ion. . . . Specifically: from the weakness of the social position to which women have 

been condemned for the greater part of history derives their intimate relation with 
all that is 'etiquette.'" GeorgSimmel, Philosophische Kultur (Leipzig, 1911), p. 47 
("Die Mode"). l « [B7,8] 

The following analysis of fashion incidentally throws a light on the significance of 
the trips that were fashionable among the bourgeoisie during the second half of 
the century. "The accent of attractions builds from their substantial center to 
their inception and their end. This begins with the most trifling symptoms, such 
as the . . . switch from a cigar to a cigarette; it is fully manifest in the passion for 
traveling, which, with its strong accentuations of departure and arrival, sets the 
life of the year vibrating as fully as possible in several short periods. The . . . 
tempo of modern life bespeaks not only the yearning for quick changes in the 
qualitative content of life, but also the force of the formal attraction of the bound- 
ary — of inception and end." Georg Simmel, Philosophuche Kultur (Leipzig, 1911), 
p. 41 ("Die Mode").' 7 [B7a,l] 

Simmel asserts that "fashions differ for different classes — the fashions of the up- 
per stratum of society are never identical with those of the lower; in fact, they are 
abandoned by the former as soon as the latter prepares to appropriate them." 
Georg Simmel, Philosophische Kultur (Leipzig, 1911), p. 32 ("Die Mode"). lB 


The quick changing of fashion means "that fashions can no longer be so expensive 
... as they were in earlier times. ... A peculiar circle . . . arises here: the more an 
article becomes subject to rapid changes of fashion, the greater the demand for 
cheap products of its kind; and the cheaper they become, the more they invite 
consumers and constrain producers to a quick change of fashion." Georg Simmel, 
Philosophische Kultur (Leipzig, 1911), pp. 58-59 ("Die Mode"). 1 '' [B7a,3] 

Fuchs on Jhering's analysis of fashion: "It must ... be reiterated that the concern 
for segregating the classes is only one cause of the frequent variation in fashions, 
and that a second cause — the private-capitalist mode of production, which in the 
interests of its profit margin must continually multiply the possibilities of turn- 
over — is of equal importance. This cause has escaped Jhering entirely, as has a 
third: the function of erotic stimulation in fashion, which operates most effectively 
when the erotic attractions of the man or the woman appear in ever new set- 
tings. . . . Friedrich Vischer, who wrote about fashion . . . twenty years before 
Jhering, did not yet recognize, in the genesis of fashion, the tendencies at work to 
keep the classes divided; ... on the other hand, he was fully aware of the erotic 
problems of dress." Eduard Fuchs, Illustrierte Sittengeschichte vom Mittelmlter 
his zur Gegenwmrt: Das biirgerliche Zeitmlter, enlarged edition (Munich <1926'?>), 
pp. 53-54. [B7a,4] 

Eduard Fuchs (Illustrierte Sittengeschichte vom Mittelmlter bis zur Gegenwmrt: 
Dms biirgerliche Zeitmlter, enlarged ed. , pp. 56-57) cites — without references — a 

remark by F. Th. Vischer, according to which the gray of men's clothing symbol- 
izes the "utterly blase" character of the masculine world, its dullness and inertia. 


"One of the surest and most deplorable symptoms of that weakness and frivolity of 
character which marked the Romantic age was the childish and fatal notion of 
rejecting the deepest understanding of technical procedures, . . . the consciously 
sustained and orderly carrying through of a work . . . — all for the sake of the 
spontaneous impulses of the individual sensibility. The idea of creating works of 
lasting value lost force and gave way, in most minds, to the desire to astonish; art 
was condemned to a whole series of breaks with the past. There arose an automatic 
audacity, which became as obligatory as tradition had been. Finally, that switch- 
ing — at high frequency — of the tastes of a given public, which is called Fashion, 
replaced with its essential changeableness the old habit of slowly forming styles, 
schools, and reputations. To say that Fashion took over the destinies of the fine 
arts is as much as to say that commercial interests were creeping in." Paul Valery, 
Pieces sur Vmrt (Paris), pp. 187-188 ("Autour de Corot"). 2 " [B8,2] 

"The great and fundamental revolution has been in cotton prints. It has required 
the combined efforts of science and art to force rebellious and ungrateful cotton 
fabrics to undergo every day so many brilliant transformations and to spread 
them everywhere within the reach of the poor. Every woman used to wear a blue or 
black dress that she kept for ten years without washing, for fear it might tear to 
pieces. But now her husband, a poor worker, covers her with a robe of flowers for 
the price of a day's labor. All the women of the people who display an iris of a 
thousand colors on our promenades were formerly in mourning." J. Michelet, Le 
Peuple (Paris, 1846), pp. 80-81. 21 [B8,3] 

"It is no longer art, as in earlier times, but the clothing business that furnishes the 
prototype of the modern man and woman. . . . Mannequins become the model for 
imitation, and the soul becomes the image of the body." Henri Polles, "L'Art du 
commerce," Vendredi, <12> (February 1937). Compare tics and English fashions 
for men. [B8,4] 

"One can estimate that, in Harmony, the changes in fashion . . . and the imperfec- 
tions in manufacturing would occasion an annual loss of 500 francs per person, 
since even the poorest of Harmonians has a wardrobe of clothes for every sea- 
son. . . . As far as clothing and furniture are concerned, . . . Harmony . . . aims 
for infinite variety with the least possible consumption. . . . The excellence of the 
products of societary industry . . . entail perfection for each and every manufac- 
tured object, so that furniture and clothing . . . become eternal." <Fourier,> cited 
in Armand and Maublanc, Fourier (Paris, 1937), vol. 2, pp. 196, 198. [B8a,l] 

"This taste for modernity is developed to such an extent that Baudelaire, like 
Balzac, extends it to the most trifling details of fashion and dress. Both writers 

study these things in themselves and turn them into moral and philosophical ques- 
tions, for these things represent immediate reality in its keenest, most aggressive, 
and perhaps most irritating guise, but also as it is most generally experienced." 
[Note:] "Besides, for Baudelaire, these matters link up with his important theory 
of dandyism, where it is a question, precisely, of morality and modernity." Roger 
Caillois, "Paris, mythe moderne," Nouvelle Revue frtrnqmise, 25, no. 284> (May 1, 
1937), p. 692. [B8a,2] 

"Sensational event! The belles dames, one fine day, decide to puff up the derriere. 
Quick, by the thousands, hoop factories! . . . But what is a simple refinement on 
illustrious coccyxes? A trumpery, no more. . . . 'Away with the rump! Long live 
crinolines!' And suddenly the civilized world turns to the production of ambula- 
tory bells. Why has the fair sex forgotten the delights of hand bells? ... It is not 
enough to keep one's place; you must make some noise down there. . . . The qumr- 
tier Breda and the Faubourg Saint-Germain are rivals in piety, no less than in 
plasters and chignons. They might as well take the church as their model! At 
vespers, the organ and the clergy take turns intoning a verse from the Psalms. The 
fine ladies with their little bells could follow this example, words and tintinnabula- 
tion by turns spurring on the conversation." A. Blanqui, Critique socimle (Paris, 
1885), vol. 1, pp. 83-84 ("Le Luxe"). — "Le Luxe" is a polemic against theluxury- 
goods industry. [B8a,3] 

Each generation experiences the fashions of the one immediately preceding it as 
the most radical antiaphrodisiac imaginable. In this judgment it is not so far off 
the mark as might be supposed. Every fashion is to some extent a bitter satire on 
love; in every fashion, perversities are suggested by the most ruthless means. 
Every fashion stands in opposition to the organic. Every fashion couples the 
living body to the inorganic world. To the living, fashion defends the rights of the 
corpse. The fetishism that succumbs to the sex appeal of the inorganic is its vital 
nerve. [B9,l] 

Where they impinge on the present moment, birth and death — the former 
through natural circumstances, the latter through social ones — considerably re- 
strict the field of play for fashion. This state of affairs is properly elucidated 
through two parallel circumstances. The first concerns birth, and shows the 
natural engendering of life "overcome" <aufgehoben> by novelty in the realm of 
fashion. The second circumstance concerns death: it appears in fashion as no less 
"overcome," and precisely through the sex appeal of the inorganic, which is 
something generated by fashion. [B9,2] 

The detailing of feminine beauties so dear to the poetry of the Baroque, a process 
in which each single part is exalted through a trope, secretly links up with the 
image of the corpse. This parceling out of feminine beauty into its noteworthy 
constituents resembles a dissection, and the popular comparisons of bodily parts 
to alabaster, snow, precious stones, or other (mostly inorganic) formations makes 

the same point. (Such dismemberment occurs also in Baudelaire: "Le Beau 
Navire.") [B9,3] 

Lipps on the somber cast of men's clothing: He thinks that "our general aversion to 
bright colors, especially in clothing for men, evinces very clearly an oft-noted 
peculiarity of our character. Gray is all theory; green — and not only green but also 
red, yellow, blue — is the golden tree of life. 22 In our predilection for the various 
shades of gray . . . running to black, we fi nd an unmistakable social reflection of 
our tendency to privilege the theory of the formation of intellect above all else. 
Even the beautiful we can no longer just enjoy; rather, ... we must first subject it 
to criticism, with the consequence that . . . our spiritual life becomes ever more 
cool and colorless." Theodor Lipps, "TJber die Symbolik unserer Kleidung," Nord 
und Siid, 33 (Breslau and Berlin, 1885), p. 352. [B9,4] 

Fashions are a collective medicament for the ravages of oblivion. The more short- 
lived a period, the more susceptible it is to fashion. Compare K2a,3. [B9a,l] 

Focillon on the phantasmagoria of fashion: "Most often ... it creates hybrids; it 
imposes on the human being the profile of an animal. . . . Fashion thus invents an 
artificial humanity which is not the passive decoration of a formal environment, 
but that very environment itself. Such a humanity — by turns heraldic, theatrical, 
fantastical, architectural — takes, as its ruling principle, the poetics of ornament, 
and what it calls 'line' ... is perhaps hut a subtle compromise between a certain 
physiological canon . . . and imaginative design." Henri Focillon, Vie des formes 
(Paris, 1934), p. 41. 23 [B9a,2] 

There is hardly another article of dress that can give expression to such divergent 
erotic tendencies, and that has so much latitude to disguise them, as a woman's 
hat. Whereas the meaning of male headgear in its sphere (the political) is strictly 
tied to a few rigid patterns, the shades of erotic meaning in a woman's hat are 
virtually incalculable. It is not so much the various possibilities of symbolic 
reference to the sexual organs that is chiefly of interest here. More surprising is 
what a hat can say about the rest of the outfit. H<elen> Grund has made the 
ingenious suggestion that the bonnet, which is contemporaneous with the crino- 
line, actually provides men with directions for managing the latter. The wide 
brim of the bonnet is turned up — thereby demonstrating how the crinoline must 
be turned up in order to make sexual access to the woman easier for the man. 


For the females of the species homo sapiens — at the earliest conceivable period of 
its existence — the horizontal positioning of the body must have had the greatest 
advantages. It made pregnancy easier for them, as can be deduced from the 
back-bracing girdles and trasses to which pregnant women today have recourse. 
Proceeding from this consideration, one may perhaps venture to ask: Mightn't 
walking erect, in general, have appeared earlier in men than in women? In that 

case, the woman would have been the four-footed companion of the man, as the 
dog or cat is today. And it seems only a step from this conception to the idea that 
the frontal encounter of the two partners in coitus would have been originally a 
kind of perversion; and perhaps it was by way of this deviance that the woman 
would have begun to walk upright. (See note in the essay "Eduard Fuchs : Der 
Sanunler und der Historiker.") 24 [B10.2] 

"It would ... he interesting to trace the effects exerted by this disposition to 
upright posture on the structure and function of the rest of the body. There is no 
doubt that all the particulars of an organic entity are held together in intimate 
cohesion, but with the present state of our scientific knowledge we must maintain 
that the extraordinary influences ascribed herewith to standing upright cannot in 
fact be proved. . . . No significant repercussion can be demonstrated for the struc- 
ture and function of the inner organs, and Herder's hypotheses — according to 
which all forces would react differently in the upright posture, and the blood 
stimulate the nerves differently — forfeit all credibility as soon as they are referred 
to differences manifestly important for behavior." Hermann Lotze, Mikrokosmos 

A passage from a cosmetics prospectus , characteristic of the fashions of the Second 
Empire. The manufacturer recommends "a cosmetic ... by means of which ladies, 
if they so desire, can give their complexion the gloss of rose taffeta." Cited in 
Ludwig Borne, Gesammelte Schriften (Hamburg and Frankfurt am Main, 1862), 

(Leipzig, 1858), vol. 2, p. 90. 25 


vol. 3, p. 282 ("Die Industrie-AussteLlung im Louvre"). 


[Ancient Paris, Catacombs, Demolitions, 
Decline of Paris] 

Easy the way that leads into Avemus. 
—Virgil 1 

Even the automobiles have an air of antiquity here. 
— Guillaurne Apollinaire 2 

How gratings — as aJlegories — have their place in hell. In the Passage Vivienne, 
sculptures over the main entrance representing allegories of commerce. [ C 1 , 1 ] 

Surrealism was born in an arcade. And under the protection of what muses! 


The father of Surrealism was Dada; its mother was an arcade. Dada, when the 
two first met, was already old. At the end of 1919, Aragon and Breton, out of 
antipathy to Montparnasse and Montmartre, transferred the site of their meet- 
ings with friends to a cafe in the Passage de l'Opera. Construction of the Boule- 
vard Haussmann brought about the demise of the Passage de l'Opera. Louis 
Aragon devoted 135 pages to this arcade; in the sum of these three digits hides 
the number nine — the number of muses who bestowed their gifts on the new- 
born Surrealism. They are named Luna, Countess Geschwitz, Kate Greenaway, 
Mors, Cleo de Merode, Dulcinea, Libido, Baby Cadum, and Friederike Kemp- 
ner. (Instead of Countess Geschwitz: Tipse?) :i [CI, 3] 

Cashier as Banae. [CI, 4] 

Pausanias produced his topography of Greece around A.D. 200, at a time when the 
cult sites and many other monuments had begun to fall into ruin. [CI, 5] 

Few things in the history of humanity are as well known to us as the history of 
Paris. Tens of thousands of volumes are dedicated solely to the investigation of 

this tiny spot on the earth's surface. Authentic guides to the antiquities of the old 
Roman city — Lutetia Parisorum — appear as early as the sixteenth century. The 
catalogue of the imperial library, printed during the reign of Napoleon III, con- 
tains nearly a hundred pages under the rubric "Paris," and this collection is far 
from complete. Many of the main thoroughfares have their own special litera- 
ture, and we possess written accounts of thousands of the most inconspicuous 
houses. In a beautiful turn of phrase, Hugo von Hofmannsthal called <this city> 
"a landscape built of pure life." And at work in the attraction it exercises on 
people is the kind of beauty that is proper to great landscapes — more precisely, to 
volcanic landscapes. Paris is a counterpart in the social order to what Vesuvius is 
in the geographic order: a menacing, hazardous massif, an ever-active hotbed of 
revolution. But just as the slopes of Vesuvius, thanks to the layers of lava that 
cover them, have been transformed into paradisal orchards, so the lava of revolu- 
tions provides uniquely fertile ground for the blossoming of art, festivity, fashion. 
D Fashion D [Cl,6] 

Balzac has secured the mythic constitution of his world through precise topo- 
graphic contours. Paris is the breeding ground of his mythology — Paris with its 
two or three great bankers (Nucingen, du Tillet), Paris with its great physician 
Horace Bianchon, with its entrepreneur Cesar Birotteau, with its four or five 
great cocottes, with its usurer Gobseck, with its sundry advocates and soldiers. 
But above all — and we see this again and again — it is from the same streets and 
corners, the same little rooms and recesses, that the figures of this world step into 
the light. What else can this mean but that topography is the ground plan of this 
mythic space of tradition < lraditiomraum>, as it is of every such space, and that it 
can become indeed its key — just as it was the key to Greece for Pausanias, and 
just as the history and situation of the Paris arcades are to become the key for the 
underworld of this century, into which Paris has sunk. [CI, 7] 

To construct the city topographically — tenfold and a hundredfold — from out of 
its arcades and its gateways, its cemeteries and bordellos, its railroad stations and 
its ... , just as formerly it was defi ned by its churches and its markets. And the 
more secret, more deeply embedded figures of the city: murders and rebellions, 
the bloody knots in the network of the streets, lairs of love, and conflagrations. 
0 Flaneur 0 [Cl,8] 

Couldn't an exciting film be made from the map of Paris? From the unfolding of 
its various aspects in temporal succession? From the compression of a centuries- 
long movement of streets, boulevards, arcades, and squares into the space of half 
an hour? And does the flaneur do anything different? D Flaneur D [CI, 9] 

"Two steps from the Palais-Royal, between the Cour des Fontaines and the Rue 
Neuve-des-Bons-Enfants, there is a dark and tortuous little arcade adorned by a 
public scribe and a greengrocer. It could resemble the cave of Cacus or of Tro- 

phonius, but it could never resemble an arcade — even with good will and gas 
lighting." <Alfred> Delvau, Les Dessous de Paris (Paris, 1860), pp. 105-106. 


One knew of places in ancient Greece where the way led down into the under- 
world. Our waking existence likewise is a land which, at certain hidden points, 
leads down into the underworld — a land full of inconspicuous places from which 
dreams arise. All day long, suspecting nothing, we pass them by, but no sooner 
has sleep come than we are eagerly groping our way back to lose ourselves in the 
dark corridors. By day, the labyrinth of urban dwellings resembles conscious- 
ness; the arcades (which are galleries leading into the city's past) issue unre- 
marked onto the streets. At night, however, under the tenebrous mass of the 
houses, their denser darkness protrudes like a threat, and the nocturnal pedes- 
trian hurries past — unless, that is, we have emboldened him to turn into the 
narrow lane. 

But another system of galleries runs underground through Paris : the Metro, 
where at dusk glowing red lights point the way into the underworld of names. 
Combat, Elysee, Georges V, Etienne Marcel, Solferino, Invalides, Vaugirard — 
they have all thrown off the humiliating fetters of street or square, and here in the 
lightning-scored, whistle-resounding darkness are transformed into misshapen 
sewer gods, catacomb fairies. This labyrinth harbors in its interior not one but a 
dozen blind raging bulls, into whose jaws not one Theban virgin once a year but 
thousands of anemic young dressmakers and drowsy clerks every morning must 
hurl themselves. D Street Names D Here, underground, nothing more of the colli- 
sion, the intersection, of names — that which aboveground forms the linguistic 
network of the city. Here each name dwells alone; hell is its demesne. Amer, 
Picon, Dubonnet are guardians of the threshold. [Cla,2] 

"Doesn't every quartier have its true apogee some time before it is fully built up? 
At that point its planet describes a curve as it draws near businesses, first the large 
and then the small. So long as the street is still somewhat new, it belongs to the 
common people; it gets clear of them only when it is smiled on by fashion. Without 
naming prices, the interested parties dispute among themselves for the rights to 
the small houses and the apartments, but only so long as the beautiful women, the 
ones with the radiant elegance that adorns not only the salon but the whole house 
and even the street, continue to hold their receptions. And should the lady become 
a pedestrian, she will want some shops, and often the street must pay not a little for 
acceding too quickly to this wish. Courtyards are made smaller, and many are 
entirely done away with; the houses draw closer together. In the end, there comes 
a New Year's Day when it is considered bad form to have such an address on one's 
visiting card. By then the majority of tenants are businesses only, and the gateways 
of the neighborhood no longer have much to lose if now and again they furnish 
asylum for one of the small tradespeople whose miserahle stalls have replaced the 
shops." <Charles> Lefeuve, Les Maisons de Paris sous Napoleon III 
(Paris and Brussels, 1873), vol. 1, p. 482. 1 □ Fashion D [Cla,3] 

It is a sad testimony to the underdeveloped amour-propre of most of the great 
European cities that so very few of them — at any rate, none of the German 
cities — have anything like the handy, minutely detailed, and durable map that 
exists for Paris. I refer to the excellent publication by Taride, with its twenty-two 
maps of all the Parisian arrondissements and the parks of Boulogne and Vmcennes. 
Whoever has stood on a streetcorner of a strange city in bad weather and had to 
deal with one of those large paper maps — which at every gust swell up like a sail, 
rip at the edges, and soon are no more than a little heap of dirty colored scraps 
with which one torments oneself as with the pieces of a puzzle — learns from the 
study of the Plan Taride what a city map can be. People whose imagination does 
not wake at the perusal of such a text, people who would not rather dream of 
their Paris experiences over a map than over photos or travel notes, are beyond 
help. [Cla,4] 

Paris is built over a system of caverns from which the din of Metro and railroad 
mounts to the surface, and in which every passing omnibus or truck sets up a 
prolonged echo. And this great technological system of tunnels and thorough- 
fares interconnects with the ancient vaults, the limestone quarries, the grottoes 
and catacombs which, since the early Middle Ages, have time and again been 
reentered and traversed. Even today, for the price of two francs, one can buy a 
ticket of admission to this most nocturnal Paris, so much less expensive and less 
hazardous than the Paris of the upper world. The Middle Ages saw it differently. 
Sources tell us that there were clever persons who now and again, after exacting 
a considerable sum and a vow of silence, undertook to guide their fellow citizens 
underground and show them the Devil in his infernal majesty. A financial ven- 
ture far less risky for the swindled than for the swindlers: Must not the church 
have considered a spurious manifestation of the Devil as tantamount to blas- 
phemy? In other ways, too, this subterranean city had its uses, for those who 
knew their way around it. Its streets cut through the great customs barrier with 
which the Farmers General had secured their right to receive duties on imports, 
and in the sixteenth and eighteenth centuries smuggling operations went on for 
the most part below ground. We know also that in times of public commotion 
mysterious rumors traveled very quickly via the catacombs, to say nothing of the 
prophetic spirits and fortunetellers duly qualified to pronounce upon them. On 
the day after Louis XVI fled Paris, the revolutionary government issued bills 
ordering a thorough search of these passages. And a few years later a rumor 
suddenly spread through the population that certain areas of town were about to 
cavern. [C2,l] 

To reconstruct the city also from its/orat«ines <springs, wells>. "Some streets have 
preserved these in name, although the most celebrated among them, the Puits 
d' Amour <Well of Love>, which was located not far from the marketplace on the 
Rue de la Truanderie, has been dried, filled up, and smoothed over without a trace 
remaining. Hence, there is hardly anything left of the echoing wells which pro- 
vided a name for the Rue du Puits-qui-Parle, or of the wells which the tanner 

Adam-l'Hermite had dug in the quartier Saint-Victor. We have known the Rues de 
Puits-Mauconseil, du Puits-de-Fer, du Puits-du-Chapitre, du Puits-Certain, du 
Bon-Puits, and finally the Rue du Puits, which, after being the Rue du Bout-du- 
Monde, became the Impasse Saint-Claude-Montmartre. The marketplace wells, 
the bucket-drawn wells, the water carriers are all giving way to the public wells, 
and our children, who will easily draw water even on the top floors of the tallest 
buildings in Paris, will be amazed that we have preserved for so long these primi- 
tive means of supplying one of humankind's most imperious needs." Maxime du 
Camp, Paris: Ses, sesfonctions et sa vie (Paris, 1875), vol. 5, p. 263. 


A different topography, not architectonic but anthropocentric in conception, 
could show us all at once, and in its true light, the most muted quartier: the 
isolated fourteenth arrondusement. That, at any rate, is how Jules Janin already 
saw it a hundred years ago. If you were born into that neighborhood, you could 
lead the most animated and audacious life without ever having to leave it. For in 
it are found, one after another, all the buildings of public misery, of proletarian 
indigence, in unbroken succession: the birthing clinic, the orphanage, the hospi- 
tal (the famous Sante), and finally the great Paris jail with its scaffold. At night, 
one sees on the narrow unobtrusive benches — not, of course, the comfortable 
ones found in the squares — men stretched out asleep as if in the waiting room of 
a way station in the course of this terrible journey. [C2,3] 

There are architectonic emblems of commerce: steps lead to the apothecary, 
whereas the cigar shop has taken possession of the corner. The business world 
knows to make use of the threshold. In front of the arcade, the skating rink, the 
swimming pool, the railroad platform, stands the tutelary of the threshold: a hen 
that automatically lays tin eggs containing bonbons. Next to the hen, an auto- 
mated fortuneteller — an apparatus for stamping our names automatically on a 
tin band, which fixes our fate to our collar. [C2,4] 

In old Paris, there were executions (for example, by hanging) in the open street. 


Rodenberg speaks of the "stygian existence" of certain worthless securities — such 
as shares in the Mires fund — which are sold by the "small-time crooks" of the 
Stock Exchange in the hope of a "future resurrection brought to pass by the day's 
market cpaotations." Julius Rodenberg, Paris bei Sonnenschein und Lampenlicht 
(Berlin, 1867), pp. 102-103. [C2a,l] 

Conservative tendency of Parisian life: as late as 1867, an entrepreneur conceived 
the plan of having fi ve hundred sedan chairs circulate throughout the city. 


Concerning the mythological topography of Paris : the character given it by its 
gates. Important is their duality: border gates and triumphal arches. Mystery of 

the boundary stone which, although located in the heart of the city, once marked 
the point at which it ended. — On the other hand, the Arc de Triomphe, which 
today has become a traffic island. Out of the field of experience proper to the 
threshold evolved the gateway that transforms whoever passes under its arch. 
The Roman victory arch makes the returning general a conquering hero. (Ab- 
surdity of the relief on the inner wall of the arch? A classicist misunderstanding?) 


The gallery that leads to the Mothers 5 is made of wood. Likewise, in the large- 
scale renovations of the urban scene, wood plays a constant though ever- 
shifting role: amid the modern traffic, it fashions, in the wooden palings and in 
the wooden planking over open substructions, the image of its rustic prehistory. 
OlronO [C2a,4] 

"It is the obscurely rising dream of northerly streets in a big city — not only Paris, 
perhaps, but also Berlin and the largely unknown London — obscurely rising, in a 
rainless twilight that is nonetheless damp. The streets grow narrow and the houses 
right and left draw closer together; ultimately it becomes an arcade with grimy 
shop windows, a gallery of glass. To the right and left: Are those dirty bistros, with 
waitresses lurking in black-and-white silk blouses? It stinks of cheap wine. Or is it 
the garish vestibule of a bordello? As I advance a little further, however, I see on 
both sides small summer-green doors and the rustic window shutters they call 
volets. Sitting there, little old ladies are spinning, and through the windows by the 
somewhat rigid flowering plant, as though in a country garden, I see a fair-skinned 
young lady in a gracious apartment, and she sings: 'Someone is spinning 
silk. . . ."' Franz Hessel, manuscript. Compare Strindherg, "The Pilot's Trials.'"' 


At the entrance, a mailbox: last opportunity to make some sign to the world one 
is leaving. [C2a,6] 

Underground sightseeing in the sewers. Preferred route: Chatelet-Madeleine. 


"The ruins of the Church and of the aristocracy, of feudalism, of the Middle Ages, 
are sublime — they fill the wide-eyed victors of today with admiration. But the 
ruins of the bourgeoisie will be an ignoble detritus of pasteboard, plaster, and 
coloring." <Honore de Balzac and other authors,) Le Diable a Paris (Paris, 1845), 
vol. 2, p. 18 (Balzac, "Ce qui disparait de Paris"). D Collector D [C2a,8] 

... All this, in our eyes, is what the arcades are. And they were nothing of all this. 
"It is only today, when the pickaxe menaces them, that they have at last become 
the true sanctuaries of a cult of the ephemeral, the ghostly landscape of danmable 
pleasures and professions. Places that yesterday were incomprehensible, and that 
tomorrow will never know." Louis Aragon, Le Paysan de Paris (Paris, 1926), 
p. 19. 7 0 Collector 0 [C2a,9] 

Sudden past of a city: windows lit up in expectation of Christmas shine as though 
their lights have been burning since 1880. [C2a,10] 

The dream — it is the earth in which the find is made that testifies to the primal 
history of the nineteenth century. D Dream D [C2a, 1 1 ] 

Reasons for the decline of the arcades: widened sidewalks, electric light, ban on 
prostitution, culture of the open air. [C2a,12] 

The rebirth of the archaic drama of the Greeks in the booths of the trade fair. 
The prefect of police allows only dialogue on this stage. "This third character is 
mute, by order of Monsieur the Prefect of Police, who permits only dialogue in 
theaters designated as nonresident." Gerard de Nerval, Le Cabaret de la Mere 
Saguet (Paris <1927>), pp. 259-260 ("Le Boulevard du Temple autrefois et 
aujourd'hui"). [C3,l] 

At the entrance to the arcade, a mailbox: a last opportunity to make some sign to 
the world one is leaving. [C3,2] 

The city is only apparently homogeneous. Even its name takes on a different 
sound from one district to the next. Nowhere, unless perhaps in dreams, can the 
phenomenon of the boundary be experienced in a more originary way than in 
cities. To know them means to understand those lines that, running alongside 
railroad crossings and across privately owned lots, within the park and along the 
riverbank, function as limits; it means to know these confines, together with the 
enclaves of the various districts. As threshold, the boundary stretches across 
streets; a new precinct begins like a step into the void — as though one had 
unexpectedly cleared a low step on a flight of stairs. [C3,3] 

At the entrance to the arcade, to the skating rink, to the pub, to the tennis court: 
penates. The hen that lays the golden praline-eggs, the machine that stamps our 
names on nameplates and the other machine that weighs us (the modern gnothi 
seauton)* slot machines, the mechanical fortuneteller — these guard the threshold. 
They are generally found, it is worth noting, neither on the inside nor truly in the 
open. They protect and mark the transitions; and when one seeks out a little 
greenery on a Sunday afternoon, one is turning to these mysterious penates as 
well. D Dream House D Love D [C3 ,4] 

The despotic terror of die hand bell, the terror that reigns throughout the apart- 
ment, derives its force no less from the magic of the threshold. Some things shrill 
as they are about to cross a threshold. But it is strange how the ringing becomes 
melancholy, like a knell, when it heralds departure — as in the Kaiserpanorama, 
when it starts up with the slight tremor of the receding image and announces 
another to come. D Dream House D Love D [C3,5] 

These gateways — the entrances to the arcades — are thresholds. No stone step <g 
serves to mark them. But this marking is accomplished by the expectant posture 

of the handful of people. Tightly measured paces reflect the fact, altogether ft 

unknowingly, that a decision lies ahead. D Dream House D Love D [C3,6] §" 


Other courts of miracles besides the one in the Passage du Caire that is celebrated 1-3 

in Notre-Dame de Paris <The Hunchback of Notre Dame.) "In the old Paris neigh- §■ 

borhood of the Marais, on the Rue des Tournelles, are the Passage and the Cour O 

des Miracles. There were other cours des miracles on the Rue Saint-Denis, the Rue p> 

du Bac, the Rue de Neuilly, the Rue des Coquilles, the Rue de la Jussienne, the 2 

Rue Saint-Nicaise, and the promontory of Saint-Roch.' <Emile de> Labedolliere, ™ 

Histoire <des environs> du nouveau Paris (Paris <1861?>), p. 31. [The biblical |? 

passages after which these courts were named: Isaiah 26.4-5 and 27.] [C3,7] o, 


In reference to Haussmann's successes with the water supply and the drainage of ~ 
Paris: "The poets would say that Haussmann was inspired more by the divinities £$ 
below than by the gods above." Lucien Dubech and Pierre d'Espezel, Histoire de | 
Paris (Paris, 1926), p. 418. [C3,8] S, 

Metro. "A great many of the stations have been given absurd names. The worst 
seems to belong to the one at the corner of the Rue Breguet and the Rue Saint- 
Sabin, which ultimately joined together, in the abbreviation 'Breguet-Sabin,' the 
name of a watchmaker and the name of a saint." Dubech and d'Espezel, Histoire 
de Paris, p. 463. [C3,9] 

Wood an archaic element in street construction: wooden barricades. [C3,10] 

June Insurrection. "Most of the prisoners were transferred via the quarries and 
subterranean passages which are located under the forts of Paris, and which are so 
extensive that half the population of the city could be contained there. The cold in 
these underground corridors is so intense that many had to run continually or 
move their arms about to keep from freezing, and no one dared to lie down on the 
cold stones. . . . The prisoners gave all the passages names of Paris streets, and 
whenever they met one another, they exchanged addresses." Englander, 
<Geschichte der franzbsischen Arbeiter-Associationen (Hamburg, 1864')>, vol. 2, 
pp. 314-315. [C3a,l] 

"The Paris stone quarries are all interconnected. ... In several places pillars have 
been set up so that the roof does not cave in. In other places the walls have been 
reinforced. These walls form long passages under the earth, like narrow streets. 
On several of them, at the end, numbers have been inscribed to prevent wrong 
turns, but without a guide one is not . . . likely to venture into these exhausted 
seams of limestone ... if one does not wish ... to risk starvation." — "The legend 
according to which one can see the stars by day from the tunnels of the Paris 
quarries" originated in an old mine shaft "that was covered over on the surface by 

a stone slab in which there is a small hole some six millimeters in diameter. 
Through this hole, the daylight shines into the gloom helow like a pale star." J . F. 
Benzenberg, Briefe geschrieben auf einer Reise nach Paris (Dortmund, 1805), 
vol. 1 , pp. 207-208. [C3a,2] 

"A thing which smoked and clacked on the Seine, making the noise of a swimming 
dog, went and came beneath the windows of the Tuileries, from the Pont Royal to 
the Pont Louis XV; it was a piece of mechanism of no great value, a sort of toy, the 
daydream of a visionary, a Utopia — a steamboat. The Parisians looked upon the 
useless thing with indifference." Victor Hugo, Les Miserables, part l, 9 cited in 
Nadar, Quand j'etais photographe (Paris <1900>), p. 280. [C3a,3] 

"As if an enchanter or a stage manager, at the first peal of the whistle from the first 
locomotive, gave a signal to all things to awake and take flight." Nadar, Quand 
j'etais photographe (Paris), p. 281. [C3a,4] 

Characteristic is the birth of one of the great documentary works on Paris — 
namely, Maxime Du Camp's Paris: Ses organes, ses fonctions et sa vie dans la 
seconde moitie du XIX' siecle, in six volumes (Paris, 1893-1896). About this book, 
the catalogue of a secondhand bookshop says: "It is of great interest for its 
documentation, which is as exact as it is minute. Du Camp, in fact, has not been 
averse to trying his hand at all sorts of jobs — performing the role of omnibus 
conductor, street sweeper, and sewennan — in order to gather materials for his 
book. His tenacity has won him the nickname 'Prefect of the Seine in partibus,' 
and it was not irrelevant to his elevation to the office of senator." Paul Bourget 
describes the genesis of the book in his "Discours academique du 13 juin 1895: 
Succession a Maxime Du Camp" (Anthologie de V Academe Frmcaue [Paris, 1921], 
vol. 2, pp. 191-193). In 1862, recounts Bourget, after experiencing problems 
with his vision, Du Camp went to see the optician Secretan, who prescribed a 
pair of spectacles for farsightedness. Here is Du Camp: "Age has gotten to me. I 
have not given it a friendly welcome. But I have submitted. I have ordered a 
lorgnon and a pair of spectacles." Now Bourget: "The optician did not have the 
prescribed glasses on hand. He needed a half hour to prepare them. M. Maxime 
Du Camp went out to pass this half hour strolling about the neighborhood. He 
found himself on the Pont Neuf . ... It was, for the writer, one of those moments 
when a man who is about to leave youth behind thinks of life with a resigned 
gravity that leads him to find in all things the image of his own melancholy. The 
minor physiological decline which his visit to the optician had just confirmed put 
him in mind of what is so quickly forgotten: that law of inevitable destruction 

which governs everything human Suddenly he began — he, the voyager to the 

Orient, the sojourner through mute and weary wastes where the sand consists of 
dust of the dead — to envision a day when this town, too, whose enormous breath 
now filled his senses, would itself be dead, as so many capitals of so many 
empires were dead. The idea came to him that it would be extraordinarily inter- 
esting for us to have an exact and complete picture of an Athens at the time of 

Pericles, of a Carthage at the time of Barca, of an Alexandria at the time of the 
Ptolemies, of a Rome at the time of the Caesars. ... By one of those keen 
intuitions with which a magnificent subject for a work flashes before the mind, he 
clearly perceived the possibility of writing about Paris this book which the histo- 
rians of antiquity had failed to write about their towns. He regarded anew the 
spectacle of the bridge, the Seine, and the quay. . . . The work of his mature years 
had announced itself." It is highly characteristic that the modern administrative- 
technical work on Paris should be inspired by classical history. Compare further, 
concerning the decline of Paris, Leon Daudet's chapter on Sacre Coeur in his 
Paris vecu Experiences of Parisx 10 [C4] 

The following remarkable sentence from the bravura piece "Paris souterrain," in 
Nadar's Quand j'etais photographe: "In his history of sewers, written with the 
genial pen of the poet and philosopher, Hugo mentions at one point (after a de- 
scription that he has made more stirring than a drama) that, in China, not a single 
peasant returns home, after selling his vegetables in the city, without bearing the 
heavy load of an enormous bucket filled with precious fertilizer" (p. 124). 


Apropos of the gates of Paris: "Until the moment you saw the toll collector appear 
between two columns, you could imagine yourself before the gates of Rome or of 
Athens." Biographie universelle ancienne et moderne, new edition published un- 
der the direction of M. Michaud, vol. 14 (Paris, 1856), p . 321 (article by P. F. L. 
Fontaine). [C4a,2] 

"In a book by Theophile Gautier, Caprices et zigzags, I find a curious page. 'A 
great danger threatens us,' it says. 'The modern Babylon will not be smashed like 
the tower of Lylak; it will not be lost in a sea of asphalt like Pentapolis, or buried 
under the sand like Thebes. It will simply be depopulated and ravaged by the rats 
of Montfaucon.' Extraordinary vision of a vague but prophetic dreamer! And it 
has in essence proven true. . . . The rats of Montfaucon . . . have not endangered 
Paris; Haussmann's arts of embellishment have driven them off. . . . But from the 
heights of Montfaucon the proletariat have descended, and with gunpowder and 
petroleum they have begun the destruction of Paris which Gautier foresaw." Max 
Nordau, Aus dem wahren Pariser Studien und Bilder (Leipzig, 
1878), vol. 1, pp. 75-76 ("Belleville"). [C4a,3] 

In 1899, during work on the Metro, foundations of a tower of the Bastille were 
discovered on the Rue Saint-Antoine. Cabinet des Estampes. [C4a,4] 

Halls of wine: "The warehouse, which consists partly of vaults for the spirits and 
partly of wine cellars dug out of stone, forms . . ., as it were, a city in which the 
streets bear the names of the most important wine regions of France. " Acht Tmge in 
Paris (Paris, July 1855), pp. 37-38. [C4a,5] 

5 "The cellars of the Cafe Anglais . . . extend quite a distance under the boulevards, 
~~ forming the most complicated denies. The management took the trouble to divide 
■ g them into streets. . . . You have the Rue du Bourgogne, the Rue du Bordeaux, the 
B« Rue du Beaune, the Rue de l'Ermitaae, the Rue du Chambertin, the crossroads of 

° ... Tonneaux. You come to a cool grotto . . . filled with shellfish . . . ; it is the 

■M grotto for the wines of Champagne. . . . The great lords of bygone days conceived 

Q the idea of dining in their stables. . . . But if you want to dine in a really eccentric 

§ fashion: vivent les caves!'''' Taxile Delord, Paris-viveur (Paris, 1854), pp. 79-81, 

| 83-84. [C4 a ,6] 

^ "Rest assured that when Hugo saw a beggar on the road, ... he saw him for what 

■g he is, for what he really is in reality: the ancient mendicant, the ancient suppli- 

8 cant, ... on the ancient road. When he looked at a marble slab on one of our 


^ mantlepieces, or a cemented brick in one of our modern chimneys, he saw it for 

m what it is: the stone of the hearth. The ancient hearthstone. When he looked at a 

6 door to the street, and at a doorstep, which is usually of cut stone, he distinguished 
g clearly on this stone the ancient line, the sacred threshold, for it is one and the 
■:i same line." Charles Peguy, Oeuvres completes, 1873-1914: Oeuvres de prose 

y (Paris, 1916), pp. 388-389 ("Victor-Marie, Comte Hugo"). [C5,l] 

"The wine shops of the Faubourg Antoine resemble those taverns on Mount 
Aventine, above the Sibyl's cave, which communicated with the deep and sacred 
afflatus; taverns whose tables were almost tripods, and where men drank what 
Ennius calls 'the sibylline wine." 1 Victor Hugo, Oeuvres completes, novels, vol. 8 
(Paris, 1881), pp. 55-56 (Les Miserables, part 4)." [C5,2] 

"Those who have traveled in Sicily will remember the celebrated convent where, 
as a result of the earth's capacity for drying and preserving bodies, the monks at a 
certain time of year can deck out in their ancient regalia all the grandees to whom 
they have accorded the hospitality of the grave: ministers, popes, cardinals, war- 
riors, and kings. Placing them in two rows within their spacious catacombs, they 
allow the public to pass between these rows of skeletons. . . . Well, this Sicilian 
convent gives us an image of our society. Under the pompous garb that adorns our 
art and literature, no heart beats — there are only dead men, who gaze at you with 
staring eyes, lusterless and cold, when you ask the century where the inspiration 
is, where the arts, where the literature." <Alfred> Nettement, Les Ruines morales 
et intellectuelles (Paris, October 1836), p. 32. This may be compared with Hugo's 
"A 1' Arc de Triomphe" of 1837. [C5,3] 

The last two chapters of Leo Claretie's Paris depiris ses origines jusqu'enl'an3000 
(Paris, 1886) are entitled "The Ruins of Paris" and "The Year 3000." The first 
contains a paraphrase of Victor Hugo's verses on the Arc de Triomphe. The second 
reproduces a lecture on the antiquities of Paris that are preserved in the famous 
"Academie de Floksima . . . located in La Cenepire. This is a new continent . . . 

discovered between Cape Horn and the southern territories in the year 2500" 
(p. 347). [C5,4] 

"There was, at the Chatelet de Paris, a broad long cellar. This cellar was eight feet 
deep below the level of the Seine. It had neither windows nor ventilators . . . ; men 
could enter, but air could not. The cellar had for a ceiling a stone arch, and for a 
floor, ten inches of mud. . . . Eight feet above the floor, a long massive beam 
crossed this vaultf rom side to side; from this beam there hung, at intervals, chains 
. . . and at the end of these chains there were iron collars. Men condemned to the 
galleys were put into this cellar until the day of their departure for Toulon. They 
were pushed under this timber, where each had his iron swinging in the darkness, 
waiting for him. ... In order to eat, they had to draw their bread, which was 
thrown into the mire, up their leg with their heel, within reach of their hand. . . . 
In this hell-sepulcher, what did they do? What can be done in a sepulcher: they 
agonized. And what can be done in a hell: they sang. ... In this cellar, almost all 
the argot songs were born. It is from the dungeon of the Grand Chatelet de Paris 
that the melancholy galley refrain of Montgomery comes: 'Timaloumisaine, timou- 
lamison.' Most of these songs are dreary; some are cheerful." Victor Hugo, 
Oeuvres completes novels, vol. 8 (Paris, 1881), pp. 297—298 (Les Miserables). 1 ' 1 
D Subterranean Paris D [C5a,l] 

On the theory of thresholds: '"Between those who go on foot in Paris and those 
who go by carriage, the only difference is the running board,' as a peripatetic 
philosopher has said. Ah, the running board! ... It is the point of departure from 
one country to another, from misery to luxury, from thoughtlessness to thoughtful- 
ness. It is the hyphen between him who is nothing and him who is all. The question 
is: where to put one's foot." Theophile Gautier, Etudes philosophiques: Paris et les 
Parisiens au XIX" siecle (Paris, 1856), p. 26. [C5a,2] 

Slight foreshadowing of the Metro in this description of model houses of the future: 
"The basements, very spacious and well lit, are all connected, forming long galler- 
ies which follow the course of the streets. Here an underground railroad has heen 
built — not for human travelers, to be sure, hut exclusively for cumbersome mer- 
chandise, for wine, wood, coal, and so forth, which it delivers to the interior of the 
home. . . . These underground trains acquire a steadily growing importance." 
Tony Moilin, Paris en Van 2000 (Paris, 1869), pp. 14-15 ("Maisons-modeles"). 


Fragments from Victor Hugo's ode "A I 'Arc de Triomphe": 


Always Paris cries and mutters. 
Who can tell — unfathomable question — 
What would be lost from the universal clamor 
On the day that Paris fell silent! 


Silent it will be nonetheless! — After so many dawns, 

So many months and years, so many played-out centuries, 

When this bank, where the stream breaks against the echoing bridges, 

Is returned to the modest and murmuring reeds; 

When the Seine shall flee the obstructing stones, 
Consuming some old dome collapsed into its depths, 
Heedful of the gentle breeze that carries to the clouds 
The rustling of the leaves and the song of birds; 

When it shall flow, at night, pale in the darkness, 
Happy, in the drowsing of its long-troubled course, 
To listen at last to the countless voices 
Passing indistinctly beneath the starry sky; 

When this city, mad and churlish ouvrisre, 
That hastens the fate reserved for its walls, 
And, turning to dust under the blows of its hammer, 
Converts bronze to coins and marble to flagstones; 

When the roofs, the bells, the tortuous hives, 
Porches, pediments, arches full of pride 
That make up this city, many-voiced and tumultuous, 
Stilling, inextricable, and teeming to the eye, 

When from the wide plain all these things have passed, 
And nothing remains of pyramid and pantheon 
But two granite towers built by Charlemagne 
And a bronze column raised by Napoleon, 

You, then, will complete the sublime triangle! 


Thus, arch, you will loom eternal and intact 
When all that the Seine now mirrors in its surface 

Will have vanished forever, 
When of that city — the equal, yes, of Rome — 
Nothing will be left except an angel, an eagle, a man 

Surmounting three summits! 


No, time takes nothing away from things. 
More than one portico wrongly vaunted 
In its protracted metamorphoses 
Comes to beauty in the end. 
On the monuments we revere 
Time casts a somber spell, 
Stretching from f agade to apse. 
Never, though it cracks and rusts, 

Is the robe which time peels from them 
Worth the one it puts back on. 


It is time who chisels a groove 

In an indigent arch-stone; 

Who rubs his knowing thumb 

On the corner of a barren marble slab; 

It is he who, in correcting the work, 

Introduces a living snake 

Midst the knots of a granite hydra. 

I think I see a Gothic roof start laughing 

When, from its ancient frieze, 

Time removes a stone and puts in a nest. 


No, everything will be dead. Nothing left in this campagna 

But a vanished population, still around, 

But the dull eye of man and the living eye of God, 

But an arch, and a column, and there, in the middle 

Of this silver ed-over river, still afoam, 

A church half -stranded in the mist. 

February 2, 1837. 

Victor Hugo, Oeuvres completes, Poetry, vol. 3 (Paris, 1880), pp. 233-245. 

[C6; C6a,l] 

Demolition sites: sources for teaching the theory of construction. "Never have 
circumstances been more favorable for this genre of study than the epoch we live 
in today. During the past twelve years, a multitude of buildings — among them, 
churches and cloisters — have been demolished down to the first layers of their 
foundations; they have all provided . . . useful instruction." Charles-Francois 
Viel, De V des mathematiques pour assurer la solidite des batimens 
(Paris, 1805), pp. 43-44. [C6a,2] 

Demolition sites: "The high walls, with their bister-colored lines around the chim- 
ney flues, reveal, like the cross-section of an architectural plan, the mystery of 
intimate distributions. ... A curious spectacle, these open houses, with their 
floorboards suspended over the abyss, their colorful flowered wallpaper still 
showing the shape of the rooms, their staircases leading nowhere now, their cellars 
open to the sky, their bizarre collapsed interiors and battered ruins. It all resem- 
bles, though without the gloomy tone, those uninhabitable structures which Pira- 
nesi outlined with such feverish intensity in his etchings." Theophile Gautier, 
Mosa'ique de mines: Paris et les Parisiens au XIX e siecle, by Alexandre Dumas, 
Theophile Gautier, Arsene Houssaye, Paul de Musset, Louis Enault, and Du Fayl 
(Paris, 1856), pp. 38-39. [C7,l] 

Conclusion of <Louis> Lurine's article "Les Boulevards": "The boulevards will die 
of an aneurism: the explosion of gas." Paris chez soi (Paris <1854>), p. 62 (anthol- 
ogy issued by Paul Boizard). [C7,2] 

Baudelaire to Poulet-Malassis on January 8, 1860, concerning Mer yon: "In one of 
his large plates, he substituted for a little balloon a cloud of predatory birds, and 
when I pointed out to him that it was implausible that so many eagles could be 
found in a Parisian sky, he answered that it was not without a basis in fact, since 
'those men' (the emperor's government) had often released eagles to study the 
presages according to the rites, and that this had been reported in the newspa- 
pers — even in Le Moniteiir. ,m Cited in Gustave Geffroy, Charles Meryon (Paris, 

On the triumphal arch: "The triumph was an institution of the Roman state and 
was conditioned on the possession of the field-commander's right — the right of the 
military imperium — which, however, was extinguished on the day of the tri- 
umph. ... Of the various provisions attaching to the right of triumph, the most 
important was that the territorial hounds of the city . . . were not to be crossed 
prematurely. Otherwise the commander would forfeit the rights of the auspices of 
war — which held only for operations conducted outside the city — and with them 
the claim to triumph. . . . Every defilement, all guilt for the murderous battle (and 
perhaps originally tliis included the danger posed by the spirits of the slain), is 
removed from the commander and the army; it remains . . . outside the sacred 
gateway. . . . Such a conception makes it clear . . . that the porta triumphalis was 
nothing less than a monument for the glorification of victory." Ferdinand Noack, 
Triumph und Triumphbogen, Warburg Library Lectures, vol. 5 (Leipzig, 1928), 

"Edgar Poe created a character who wanders the streets of capital cities; he called 
him the Man of the Crowd. The restlessly inquiring engraver is the Man of 
Stones. . . . Here we have . . . an . . . artist who did not study and draw, like 
Piranesi, the remnants of a bygone existence, yet whose work gives one the sensa- 
tion of persistent nostalgia. . . . This is Charles Meryon. His work as an engraver 
represents one of the profoundest poems ever written about a city, and what is 
truly original in all these striking pictures is that they seem to be the image, despite 
being drawn directly from life, of things that are finished, that are dead or about to 
die. . . . This impression exists independently of the most scrupulous and realistic 
reproduction of subjects chosen by the artist. There was something of the vision- 
ary in Meryon, and he undoubtedly divined that these rigid and unyielding forms 
were ephemeral, that these singular beauties were going the way of all flesh. He 
listened to the language spoken by streets and alleys that, since the earliest days of 
the city, were being continually torn up and redone; and that is why his evocative 
poetry makes contact with the Middle Ages through the nineteenth-century city, 
why it radiates eternal melancholy through the vision of immediate appearances. 
"OW Paris is gone (no human heart / changes half so f ast as a city's face). " I4 These 

1926), pp. 126-127. 


pp. 150-151, 154. 


two lines by Baudelaire could serve as an epigraph to Meryon's entire oeuvre." 
Gustave Geffroy, Charles Meryon (Paris, 1926), pp. 1-3. [C7a,l] 

"There is no need to imagine that the ancient porta triumphalis was already an 
arched gateway. On the contrary, since it served an entirely symbolic act, it would 
originally have been erected by the simplest of means — namely, two posts and a 
straight lintel." Ferdinand Noack, Triumph und Triumphbogen, Warburg Library 
Lectures, vol. 5 (Leipzig, 1928), p. 168. [C7a,2] 

The march through the triumphal arch as rite de passage: "The march of the 
troops through the narrow gateway has been compared to a 'rigorous passage 
through a narrow opening,' something to which the significance of a rebirth at- 
taches." Ferdinand Noack, Triumph und Triumphbogen, Warburg Library Lec- 
tures, vol. 5 (Leipzig, 1928), p. 153. [C7a,3] 

The fantasies of the decline of Paris are a symptom of the fact that technology 
was not accepted. These visions bespeak the gloomy awareness that along 
with the great cities have evolved the means to raze them to the ground. 


Noack mentions "that Scipio's arch stood not above but opposite the road that 
leads up to the Capitol (adversus viam, qua in Capitolium ascenditur). . . . We 
are thus given insight into the purely monumental character of these structures, 
which are without any practical meaning." On the other hand, the cultic sig- 
nificance of these structures emerges as clearly in their relation to special occa- 
sions as in their isolation: "And there, where many . . . later arches stand — at the 
beginning and end of the street, in the vicinity of bridges, at the entrance to the 
forum, at the city limit — there was operative for the . . . Romans a conception of 
the sacred as boundary or threshold." Ferdinand Noack, Triumph und Tri- 
umphbogen, Warburg Library Lectures, vol. 5 (Leipzig, 1928), pp. 162, 169. 


Apropos of the hicycle: "Actually one should not deceive oneself about the real 
purpose of the fashionable new mount, which a poet the other day referred to as 
the horse of the Apocalypse." U Illustration, June 12, 1869, cited in Vendredi, 
October 9, 1936 (Louis Cheronnet, "Le Coin des vieux"). [C8,2] 

Concerning the fire that destroyed the hippodrome: "The gossips of the district see 
in this disaster a visitation of the wrath of heaven on the guilty spectacle of the 
velocipedes." Le Gaulois, October 2 (3?), 1869, cited in Vendredi, October 9, 1936 
( Louis Cheronnet, "Le Coin des vieux"). The hippodrome was the site of ladies' 
hicycle races. [C8,3] 

To elucidate Les Mysteres de Paris and similar works, Caillois refers to the roman 
noir, in particular The Mysteries of Udolpho, on account of the "preponder- 

ance of vaults and underground passages." Roger Caillois, "Paris, mythe 
moderne," Nouvelle Revue francaise, 25, no. 284 (May 1, 1937), p. 686. 


"The whole of the rive gauche, all the way from the Tour de Nesle to the Tombe 
Issoire . . . , is nothing but a hatchway leading from the surface to the depths. And 
if the modern demolitions reveal the mysteries of the upper world of Paris, per- 
haps one day the inhabitants of the Left Bank will awaken startled to discover the 
mysteries below." Alexandre Dumas, Les Mohicans tie Paris, vol. 3 (Paris, 1863). 


"This intelligence of Blanqui's, . . . this tactic of silence, this politics of the cata- 
combs, must have made Barbes hesitate occasionally, as though confronted with 
... an unexpected stairway that suddenly gapes and plunges to the cellar in an 
unfamiliar house." Gustave Geffroy, L'Enferme (Paris, 1926), vol. 1, p. 72. 


<Regis> Messac (<in he "Detective Novel" et Vinfluence de la pensee scientifique 
[Paris, 1929], > p. 419) quotes from Vidocq's Memoires (chapter 45): "Paris is a 
spot on the globe, but this spot is a sewer and the emptying point of all sewers." 


Le Panorama (a literary and critical revue appearing five times weekly), in vol- 
ume 1, number 3 (its last number), February 25, 1840, under the title "Difficult 
Questions": "Will the universe end tomorrow? Or must it — enduring for all 
eternity — see the end of our planet? Or will this planet, which has the honor of 
bearing us, outlast all the other worlds?" Very characteristic that one could write 
this way in a literary revue. (In the first number, "To Our Readers," it is acknowl- 
edged, furthermore, that Le Panorama was founded to make money.) The 
founder was the vaudevillian Hippolyte Lucas. [C8a,2] 

Saint who each night led back 

The entire flock to the fold, diligent shepherdess, 

When the world and Paris come to the end of their term, 

May you, with a firm step and a light hand, 

Through the last yard and the last portal, 

Lead back, through the vault and the folding door, 

The entire flock to the right hand of the Father. 

Charles Peguy, La Tapisserie de Sainte-Genevieve, cited in Marcel Raymond, De 
Baudelaire au Surrealisme (Paris, 1933), p. 219. 15 [C8a,3] 

Distrust of cloisters and clergy during the Commune: "Even more than with the 
incident of the Rue Picpus, everything possible was done to excite the popular 
imagination, thanks to the vaults of Saint-Laurent. To the voice of the press was 

added publicizing through images. Etienne Carjat photographed the skeletons, <§ 

'with the aid of electric light.' . . . After Picpus, after Saint-Laurent, at an interval -- 

of some days, the Convent of the Assumption and the Church of Notre-Dame-des- {"} 

Victoires. A wave of madness overtook the capital. Everywhere people thought §* 

they were finding buried vaults and skeletons." Georges Laronze, Histoire de la g' 

Commune de 1871 (Paris, 1928), p. 370. [C8a,4] ^ 

1871: "The popular imagination could give itself free reign, and it took every o 

opportunity to do so. There wasn't one civil-service official who did not seek to g 

expose the method of treachery then in fashion: the subterranean method. In the 8 

prison of Saint-Lazare, they searched for the underground passage which was said - 

to lead from the chapel to Argenteuil — that is, to cross two branches of the Seine <? 

and some ten kilometers as the crow fl ies. At Saint-Sulpice, the passage supposedly o, 

abutted the chateau of Versailles." Georges Laronze, Histoire de la Commune de £>' 
1871 (Paris, 1928), p. 399. [C8a,5] 

"As a matter of fact, men had indeed replaced the prehistoric water. Many centu- [f 
ries after it had withdrawn, they had begun a similar overflowing. They had S, 
spread themselves in the same hollows, pushed out in the same directions. It was 
down there — toward Saint-Merri, the Temple, the Hotel de Ville, toward Les 
Halles, the Cemetery of the Innocents, and the Opera, in the places where water 
had found the greatest difficulty escaping, places which had kept oozing with 
infiltrations, with subterranean streams — that men, too, had most completely 
saturated the soil. The most densely populated and busiest quartiers still lay over 
what had once been marsh." Jules Romains, Les Hommes de bonne volonte, book 
1, he 6 octobre (Paris <1932>), p. 191. 16 [C9,l] 

Baudelaire and the cemeteries: "Behind the high walls of the houses, toward Mont- 
martre, toward Menilmontant, toward Montparnasse, he imagines at dusk the 
cemeteries of Paris, these three other cities within the larger one — cities smaller in 
appearance than the city of the living, which seems to contain them, but in reality 
how much more populous, with their closely packed little compartments arranged 
in tiers under the ground. And in the same places where the crowd circulates 
today — the Square des Innocents, for example — he evokes the ancient ossuaries, 
now leveled or entirely gone, swallowed up in the sea of time with all their dead, 
like ships that have sunk with all their crew aboard." Francois Porche, La Vie 
douloureuse de Charles Baudelaire, in series entitled Le Roman des Grandes 
Existences, no. 6 (Paris <1926>), pp. 186-187. [C9,2] 

Parallel passage to the ode on the Arc de Triomphe. Humanity is apostrophized: 

As for your cities, Babels of monuments 
Where all events clamor at once, 

How substantial are they? Arches, towers, pyramids — 
I would not be surprised if, in its humid incandescence, 
The dawn one morning suddenly dissolved them, 

Along with the dewdrops on sage and thyme. 
And all your noble dwellings, many-tiered, 
End up as heaps of stone and grass 
Where, in the sunlight, the subtle serpent hisses. 

Victor Hugo, La Fin de Satan; Dieu (Paris, 1911), pp. 475-476 ("Dieu-L'Ange"). 


Leon Daudet on the view of Paris from Sacre Coeur. "From high up you can see 
this population of palaces, monuments, houses, and hovels, which seem to have 
gathered in expectation of some cataclysm, or of several cataclysms — meteorologi- 
cal, perhaps, or social. ... As a lover of hilltop sanctuaries, which never fail to 
stimulate my mind and nerves with their bracing harsh wind, I have spent hours 
on Fourvieres looking at Lyons, on Notre-Dame de la Garde looking at Marseilles, 
on Sacre Coeur looking at Paris. . . . And, yes, at a certain moment I heard in 
myself something like a tocsin, a strange admonition, and I saw these three mag- 
nificent cities . . . threatened with collapse, with devastation by fire and flood, with 
carnage, with rapid erosion, like forests leveled en bloc. At other times, I saw them 
preyed upon by an obscure, subterranean evil, which undermined the monuments 
and neighborhoods, causing entire sections of the proudest homes to crumble. . . . 
From the standpoint of these promontories, what appears most clearly is the men- 
ace. The agglomeration is menacing; the enormous labor is menacing. For man has 
need of labor, that is clear, but he has other needs as well. . . . He needs to isolate 
himself and to form groups, to cry out and to revolt, to regain cabn and to sub- 
mit. . . . Finally, the need for suicide is in him; and in the society he forms, it is 
stronger than the instinct for self-preservation. Hence, as one looks out over 
Paris, Lyons, or Marseilles, from the heights of Sacre Coeur, the Fourvieres, or 
Notre-Dame de la Garde, what astounds one is that Paris, Lyons, and Marseilles 
have endured." Leon Daudet, Paris vecu, vol. 1, Rive droite (Paris <1930>), 

"In a long series of classical writers from Polybius onward, we read of old, re- 
nowned cities in which the streets have become lines of empty, crumbling shells, 
where the cattle browse in forum and gymnasium, and the amphitheater is a sown 
field, dotted with emergent statues and herms. Rome had in the fifth century of our 
era the population of a village, but its imperial palaces were still habitable." 
Oswald Spengler, LeDeclin tie VOccident <trans. M. Tazerout), vol. 2, pt. 1 (Paris, 

pp. 220-221. 


1933), p. 151. 17 


[Boredom, Eternal Return] 

Must the sun therefore murder all dreams, 
the pale children of my pleasure grounds? 
The days have grown so still and glowering. 
Satisfaction lures me with nebulous visions, 
while dread makes away with my salvation — 
as though I were about to judge my God. 

—Jakob van Hoddis' 

Boredom waits for death. 
— Johann Peter HebeP 

Waiting is life. 
— Victor Hugo 3 

Child with its mother in the panorama. The panorama is presenting the Battle 
of Sedan. The child finds it all very lovely: "Only, it's too bad the sky is so 
dreary." — "That's what the weather is like in war," answers the mother. D Dio- 
ramas D 

Thus, the panoramas too are in fundamental complicity with this world of 
mist, this cloud-world: the light of their images breaks as through curtains of rain. 


"This Paris [of Baudelaire's] is very different from the Paris of Verlaine, which 
itself has already faded. The one is somber and rainy, like a Paris on which the 
image of Lyons has been superimposed; the other is whitish and dusty, like a pastel 
by Raphael. One is suffocating, whereas the other is airy, with new buildings 
scattered in a wasteland, and, not far away, a gate leading to withered arbors." 
Francois Porche, La Vie doidoureuse de Charles Baudelaire (Paris, 1926), p. 119. 


The mere narcotizing effect which cosmic forces have on a shallow and brittle 
personality is attested in the relation of such a person to one of the highest and 
most genial manifestations of these forces: the weather. Nothing is more charac- 

teristic than that precisely this most intimate and mysterious affair, the working 
of the weather on humans, should have become the theme of their emptiest 
chatter. Nothing bores the ordinary man more than the cosmos. Hence, for him, 
the deepest connection between weather and boredom. How fine the ironic 
overcoming of this attitude in the story of the splenetic Englishman who wakes 
up one morning and shoots himself because it is raining. Or Goethe: how he 
managed to illuminate the weather in his meteorological studies, so that one is 
tempted to say he undertook this work solely in order to be able to integrate even 
the weather into his waking, creative life. [Dl,3] 

Baudelaire as the poet of Spleen de Paris: "One of the central motifs of this poetry 
is, in effect, boredom in the fog, ennui and indiscriminate haze (fog of the cities). 
In a word, it is spleen." Fran§ois Porche, La Vie douloureuse de Charles Baude- 
laire (Paris, 1926), p. 184. [Dl,4] 

In 1903, in Paris, Emile Tardieu brought out a book entitled L'Ennui, in which all 
human activity is shown to be a vain attempt to escape from boredom, but in 
which, at the same time, everything that was, is, and will be appears as the 
inexhaustible nourishment of that feeling. To hear this, you might suppose the 
work to be a mighty monument of literamre — a monument aere perennius in 
honor of the taedium uitae of the Romans.' 1 But it is only the self- satisfied shabby 
scholarship of a new Homais, who reduces all greatness, the heroism of heroes 
and the asceticism of saints, to documents of his own spiritually barren, petty- 
bourgeois discontent. [Dl,5] 

"When the French went into Italy to maintain the rights of the throne of France 
over the duchy of Milan and the kingdom of Naples, they returned home quite 
amazed at the precautions which Italian genius had taken against the excessive 
heat; and, in admiration of the arcaded galleries, they strove to imitate them. The 
rainy climate of Paris, with its celebrated mud and mire, suggested the pillars, 
which were a marvel in the old days. Here, much later on, was the impetus for the 
Place Roy ale. A strange thing! It was in keeping with the same motifs that, under 
Napoleon, the Rue de Rivoli, the Rue de Castiglione, and the famous Rue des 
Colonnes were constructed." The turban came out of Egypt in this manner as well. 
he Diable a Paris (Paris, 1845), vol. 2, pp. 11-12 (Balzac, "Ce qui disparait de 

How many years separated the war mentioned above from the Napoleonic expe- 
dition to Italy? And where is the Rue des Colonnes located? 5 [Dl,6] 

"Rainshowers have given birth to <many> adventures." f ' Diminishing magical 
power of the rain. Mackintosh. [Dl,7] 

Asdust,raintakesits revenge on the arcades. — Under Louis Philippe, dust settled 
even on the revolutions. When the young due d'Orleans "married the princess of 
Mecklenburg, a great celebration was held at that famous ballroom where the 

first symptoms of the Revolution <of 1830> had broken out. When they came to 
prepare the room for the festivities of the young couple, the people in charge 
found it as the Revolution had left it. On the ground could be seen traces of the 
military banquet — candle ends, broken glasses, champagne corks, trampled 
cockades of the Gardes du Corps, and ceremonial ribbons of officers from the 
Flanders regiment." Karl Gutzkow, Briefe aus Paris (Leipzig, 1842), vol. 2, p. 87. A 
historical scene becomes a component of the panopticon. D Diorama D Dust and 
Stifled Perspective 0 [Dl a, 1] 

"He explains that the Rue Grange-Bateliere is particularly dusty, that one gets 
terribly grubby in the Rue Reaumur." Louis Aragon, Le Paysan tie Paris (Paris, 
1926), p. 88. 7 [Dla,2] 

Plush as dust collector. Mystery of dustmotes playing in the sunlight. Dust and 
the "best room." "Shortly after 1840, fully padded furniture appears in France, 
and with it the upholstered style becomes dominant." Max von Boehn, Die Mode 
im XIX. Jahrhundert, vol. 2 (Munich, 1907), p. 131. Other arrangements to stir 
up dust: the trains of dresses. "The true and proper train has recently come back 
into vogue, but in order to avoid the nuisance of having it sweep the streets, the 
wearer is now provided with a small hook and a string so that she can raise and 
carry the train whenever she goes anywhere." Friedrich Theodor Vischer, Mode 
und Zynumus (Stuttgart, 1879), p. 12. D Dust and Stifled Perspective □ [Dla,3] 

The Galerie du Thermometre and the Galeric du Barometre, in the Passage de 
l'Opera. [Dla,4] 

A feuilletonist of the 1840s, writing on the subject of the Parisian weather, has 
determined that Corneille spoke only once (in Le Cid) of the stars, and that Racine 
spoke only once of the sun. He maintains, further, that stars and flowers were first 
discovered for literature hy Chateaubriand in America and thence transplanted to 
Paris. See Victor Mery, "Le Climat de Paris," in Le Diable a Paris <vol. 1 (Paris, 
1845), p. 245>. [Dla,5] 

Concerning some lascivious pictures: "It is no longer the fan that's the thing, hut 
the umbrella — invention worthy of the epoch of the king's national guard. The 
umbrella encouraging amorous fantasies! The umhrella furnishing discreet cover. 
The canopy, the roof, over Robinson's island." John Grand -Carteret, Le 
Decollete et le retrousse (Paris <1910>), vol. 2, p. 56. [Dla,6] 

"Only here," Chirico once said, "is it possihle to paint. The streets have such 
gradations of gray. ..." [Dla,7] 

The Parisian atmosphere reminds Carus" of the way the Neapolitan coastline looks 
when the sirocco hlows. [Dla,8] 

Only someone who has grown up in the big city can appreciate its rainy weather, 
which altogether slyly sets one dreaming back to early childhood. Rain makes 
everything more hidden, makes days not only gray but uniform. From morning 
until evening, one can do the same thing — play chess, read, engage in argu- 
ment — whereas sunshine, by contrast, shades the hours and discountenances the 
dreamer. The latter, therefore, must get around the days of sun with subter- 
fuges — above all, must rise quite early, like the great idlers, the waterfront loafers 
and the vagabonds: the dreamer must be up before the sun itself. In the "Ode to 
Blessed Morning," which some years past he sent to Emmy Hennings, Ferdi- 
nand Hardekopf, the only authentic decadent that Germany has produced, 
confides to the dreamer the best precautions to be taken for sunny days. 9 


"To give to this dust a semblance of consistency, as by soaking it in blood." Louis 
Veuillot, Les Odeurs de Paris (Paris, 1914), p. 12. [Dla.10] 

Other European cities admit colonnades into their urban perspective, Berlin 
setting the style with its city gates. Particularly characteristic is the Halle Gate — 
unforgettable for me on a blue picture postcard representing Belle- Alliance Platz 
by night. The card was transparent, and when you held it up to the light, all its 
windows were illuminated with the very same glow that came from the full moon 
up in the sky. [D2,l] 

"The buildings constructed f or the new Paris revive all the styles. The ensemble is 
not lacking in a certain unity, however, because allthe styles belong to the category 
of the tedious — in fact, the most tedious of the tedious, which is the emphatic and 
the aligned. Line up! Eyes front! It seems that the Amphion of this city is a corpo- 
ral. . . . / He moves great quantities of things — showy, stately, colossal — and all of 
them are tedious. He moves other things, extremely ugly; they too are tedious. / 
These great streets, these great quays, these great houses, these great sewers, their 
physiognomy poorly copied or poorly dreamed — all have an indeiinable something 
indicative of unexpected and irregular fortune. They exude tedium." Veuillot, Les 
Odeurs de Paris <Paris, 1914>, p. 9. □ Haussmann D [D2,2] 

Pelletan describes a visit with a king of the Stock Exchange, a multimillionaire: 
"As I entered the courtyard of the house, a squad of grooms in red vests were 
occupied in rubbing down a half dozen English horses. I ascended a marble stair- 
case hung with a giant gilded chandelier, and encountered in the vestibule a major- 
domo with white cravat and plump calves. He led me into a large glass-roofed 
gallery whose walls were decorated entirely with camellias and hothouse plants. 
Something like suppressed boredom lay in the air; at the very first step, you 
breathed a vapor as of opium. I then passed hetween two rows of perches on which 
parakeets from various countries were roosting. They were red, blue, green, gray, 
yellow, and white; but all seemed to suffer from homesickness. At the extreme end 
of the gallery stood a small table opposite a Renaissance-style fireplace, for at this 

hour the master of the house took his breakfast. . . . After I had waited a quarter 5 
of an hour, he deigned to appear. . . . He yawned, looked sleepy, and seemed 

continually on the point of nodding off; he walked Jike a somnambulist. His fatigue g 

had infected the walls of his mansion. The parakeets stood out Jike his separate ts 

thoughts, each one materiaJized and attached to a pole. . . . " D Interior D <Julius> 3 

Rodenberg, Paris bei Sonnenschein und Lampenlicht (Leipzig, 1867), pp. 104- § 

105. [D2,3] „ 

Fetes franqaises, on Paris en miniature <French Festivities, or Paris in Mini- ^ 
ature>: produced by Rougemont and Gentil at the Theatre des Varietes. The plot g 
has to do with the marriage of Napoleon I to Marie-Louise, and the conversation, 3 
at this point, concerns the planned festivities. "Nevertheless," says one of the 
characters, "the weather is rather uncertain." — Reply: "My friend, you may rest 
assured that this day is the choice of our sovereign." He then strikes up a song that 

At his piercing glance, doubt not — 
The future is revealed; 
And when good weather is required, 
We look to his star. 

Cited in Theodore Muret, L'Histoire par le theatre, 1 789-1851 (Paris, 1865), vol. 
l,p.262. [D2,4] 

"This dull, glib sadness ca Jled ennui." Louis Venillot , Les Odeurs de Paris (Paris , 
1914), p. 177. [D2.5] 

"Along with every outfit go a few accessories which show it off to best effect — that 
is to say, which cost lots of money because they are so quickly ruined, in particular 
by every downpour." This apropos of the top hat. D Fashion D F. Th. Vischer, 
Verniinftige Gedanken iiber die jetzige Mode <in Kritische Gdnge, new series, no. 
3 (Stuttgart, 1861)>, p. 124. [D2,6] 

We are bored when we don't know what we are waiting for. That we do know, or 
think we know, is nearly always the expression of our superficiality or inatten- 
tion. Boredom is the threshold to great deeds. — Now, it would be important to 
know: What is the dialectical antithesis to boredom? [D2,7] 

The quite humorous book by Emile Tardieu, L'Ennui (Paris, 1903), whose main 
thesis is that life is purposeless and groundless and that all striving after happi- 
ness and equanimity is futile, names the weather as one among many factors 
supposedly causing boredom. — This work can be considered a sort of breviary 
for the twentieth century. [D2,8] 

Boredom is a warm gray fabric lined on the inside with the most lustrous and 
colorful of silks. In this fabric we wrap ourselves when we dream. We are at 

home then in the arabesques of its lining. But the sleeper looks bored and gray 
within his sheath. And when he later wakes and wants to tell of what he 
dreamed, he conununicates by and large only this boredom. For who would be 
able at one stroke to turn the lining of time to the outside? Yet to narrate dreams 
signifies nothing else. And in no other way can one deal with the arcades — struc- 
tures in which we relive, as in a dream, the life of our parents and grandparents, 
as the embryo in the womb relives the life of animals. Existence in these spaces 
flows then without accent, like the events in dreams. Fl&nerie is the rhythmics of 
this slumber. In 1839, a rage for tortoises overcame Paris. One can well imagine 
the elegant set mimicking the pace of this creature more easily in the arcades than 
on the boulevards. D Flaneur □ [D2a,l] 

Boredom is always the external surface of unconscious events. For this reason, 
it has appeared to the great dandies as a mark of distinction. Ornament and 
boredom. [D2a,2] 

On the double meaning of the term temps 10 in French [D2a,3] 

Factory labor as economic infrastructure of the ideological boredom of the up- 
per classes. "The miserable routine of endless drudgery and toil in which the 
same mechanical process is repeated over and over again is like the labor of 
Sisyphus. The burden of labor, like the rock, always keeps falling back on the 
worn-out laborer." Friedrich Engels, Die Lage der arbeitenden Klasse in England 
<2nd ed. (Leipzig, 1848)>, p. 217; cited in Marx, Kapital (Hamburg, 1922), vol. 1, 
p. 388. 11 ' [D2a 4] 

The feeling of an "incurable imperfection in the very essence of the present" 
(see Les Plairirs et les jours, cited in Gide's homage) 52 was perhaps, for Proust, the 
main motive for getting to know fashionable society in its innermost recesses, 
and it is an underlying motive perhaps for the social gatherings of all human 
beings. [D2a,5] 

On the salons: "All faces evinced the unmistakable traces of boredom, and conver- 
sations were in general scarce, quiet, and serious. Most of these people viewed 
dancing as drudgery, to which you had to submit because it was supposed to be 
good form to dance." Further on, the proposition that "no other city in Europe, 
perhaps, displays such a dearth of satisfied, cheerful, lively faces at its soirees as 
Paris does in its salons. . . . Moreover, in no other society so much as in this one, 
and by reason of fashion no less than real conviction, is the unbearable boredom 
so roundly lamented." "A natural consequence of this is that social affairs are 
marked by silence and reserve, of a sort that at larger gatherings in other cities 
would most certainly be the exception." Ferdinand von Gall, Paris und seine 
Salons, vol. 1 (Oldenburg, 1844), pp. 151-153, 158. [D2a,6] 

The following lines provide an occasion for meditating on timepieces in apart- 
ments: " A certain blitheness, a casual and even careless regard for the hurrying 

time, an indifferent expenditure of the all too quickly passing hours — these are 
qualities that favor the superficial salon life." Ferdinand von Gall, Paris und seine 
Salons, vol. 2 (Oldenburg, 1845), p. 171. [D2a,7] 

Boredom of the ceremonial scenes depicted in historical paintings, and the dolce 
far niente of battle scenes with all that dwells in the smoke of gunpowder. From 
the images d 'Epinal to Manet's Execution of Emperor Maximilian, it is always the 
same — and always a new — fata morgana, always the smoke in which Mogreby 
<?> or the genie from the bottle suddenly emerges before the dreaming, absent- 
minded art lover. D Dream House, Museums D 13 [D2a,8] 

Chess players at the Cafe de la Regence: "It was there that clever players could he 
seen playing with their backs to the chessboard. It was enough for them to hear the 
name of the piece moved by their opponent at each turn to be assured of winning." 
Histoire des cafes de Paris (Paris, 1857), p. 87. [D2a,9] 

"In sum, classic urban art, after presenting its masterpieces, fell into decrepitude 
at the time of the philosophes and the constructors of systems. The end of the 
eighteenth century saw the birth of innumerable projects; the Commission of Art- 
ists brought them into accord with a body of doctrine, and the Empire adapted 
them without creative originality. The flexible and animated classical style was 
succeeded by the systematic and rigid pseudoclassical style. . . . The Arc de Tri- 
omphe echoes the gate of Louis XIV; the Vendome column is copied from Rome; 
the Church of the Madeleine, the Stock Exchange, the Palais-Bourbon are so 
many Greco-Roman temples." Lucien Dubech and Pierre d'Espezel, Histoire tie 
Paris (Paris, 1926), p. 345. D Interior D [D3,l] 

"The First Empire copied the triumphal arches and monuments of the two classi- 
cal centuries. Then there was an attempt to revive and reinvent more remote 
models: the Second Empire imitated the Renaissance, the Gothic, the Pompeian. 
After this came an epoch of vulgarity without style." Dubech and d'Espezel, His- 
toire tie Paris (Paris, 1926), p. 464. D Interior D [D3,2] 

Announcement for a book by Benjamin Gastineau, La Vie en chemin de fer <Life 
on the Railroad): "L* Vie en chemin defer is an entrancing prose poem. It is an 
epic of modern life, always fiery and turbulent, a panorama of gaiety and tears 
passing before us like the dust of the rails before the windows of the coach." By 
Benjamin Gastineau, Paris en rose (Paris, 1866), p. 4. [D3,3] 

Rather than pass the time, one must invite it in. To pass the time (to kill time, 
expel it): the gambler. Time spills from his every pore. — To store time as a 
battery stores energy: the flaneur. Finally, the third type: he who waits. He takes 
in the time and renders it up in altered form — that of expectation. "' [D3,4] 

''This recently deposited limestone — the bed on which Paris rests — readily crum- 
bles into a dust which, like all limestone dust, is very painful to the eyes and lungs. 

A little rain does nothing at all to help, since it is immediately absorbed and the 
surface left dry once again." "Here is the source of the unprepossessing bleached 
gray of the houses, which are all built from the brittle limestone mined near Paris; 
here, too, the origin of the dun-colored slate roofs that blacken with soot over the 
years, as well as the high, wide chimneys which deface even the public build- 
ings, . . . and which in some districts of the old city stand so close together that 
they almost block the view entirely." J. F. Benzenberg, Briefe geschrieben auf 
einer Reise nach Paris (Dortmund, 1805), vol. 1, pp. 112, 111. [D3,5] 

"Engels told me that it was in Paris in 1848, at the Cafe de la Regence (one of the 
earliest centers of the Revolution of 1789), that Marx first laid out for him the 
economic determinism of his materialist theory of history." Paul Laf argue, 
"Persbnliche Erinnerungen an Friedrich Engels," Die neue Zeit, 23, no. 2 
(Stuttgart, 1905), p. 558. [D3,6] 

Boredom — as index to participation in the sleep of the collective. Is this the 
reason it seems distinguished, so that the dandy makes a show of it? [D3,7] 

In 1757 there were only three cafes in Paris. [D3a,l] 

Maxims of Empire painting: "The new artists accept only 'the heroic style, the 
sublime,' and the sublime is attained only with 'the nude and drapery.' . . . Paint- 
ers are supposed to find their inspiration in Plutarch or Homer, Livy or Virgil, 
and, in keeping with David's recommendation to Gros, are supposed to choose . . . 
'subjects known to everyone.' . . . Subjects taken from contemporary life were, 
because of the clothing styles, unworthy of 'great art.'" A. Malet and P. Grillet, 
XIX" siecle (Paris, 1919), p. 158. D Fashion D [D3a,2] 

"Happy the man who is an observer! Boredom, for him, is a word devoid of 
sense." Victor Fournel, Ce qu'on voit dans les rues tie Paris (Paris, 1858), p. 271. 


Boredom began to be experienced in epidemic proportions during the 1840s. 
Lamartine is said to be the first to have given expression to the malady. It plays a 
role in a little story about the famous comic Deburau. A distinguished Paris 
neurologist was consulted one day by a patient whom he had not seen before. 
The patient complained of the typical illness of the times — weariness with life, 
deep depressions, boredom. "There's nothing wrong with you," said the doctor 
after a thorough examination. "Just try to relax — find something to entertain 
you. Go see Deburau some evening, and life will look different to you." "Ah, dear 
sir," answered the patient, "I am Deburau." [D3a,4] 

Return from the Courses de la Marche: "The dust exceeded all expectations. The 
elegant folk back from the races are virtually encrusted; they remind you of Pom- 

peii. They have had to be exhumed with the help of a brush, if not a pickaxe." 
H. de Pene, Paris intime (Paris, 1859), p. 320. [D3a,5] 

"The introduction of the Macadam system for paving the boulevards gave rise to 
numerous caricatures. Cham shows the Parisians blinded by dust, and he pro- 
poses to erect ... a statue with the inscription: 'In recognition of Macadam, from 
the grateful oculists and opticians.' Others represent pedestrians mounted on 
stilts traversing marshes and bogs." Paris sous la Republique de 1848: Exposition 
de la Bibliotheque et des Travaux historiques de la Ville de Paris (1909) [Poete, 
Beaurepaire, Clouzot, Henriot], p. 25. [D3a,6] 

"Only England could have produced dandyism. France is as incapable of it as its 
neighbor is incapable of anything like our . . . lions, who are as eager to please as 
the dandies are disdainful of pleasing. . . . D'Orsay . . . was naturally and passion- 
ately pleasing to everyone, even to men, whereas the dandies pleased only in 
displeasing. . . . Between the lion and the dandy lies an abyss. But how much 
wider the abyss between the dandy and the fop!" Larousse, <Grand Dictionnaire 
universelle> du dix-neuvieme sieclei, vol. 6 (Paris, 1870), p. 63 (article on the 
dandy)>. [D4,l] 

In the second-to-last chapter of his hook Paris: From Its Origins to the Year 3000 
(Paris, 1886), Leo Claretie speaks of a crystal canopy that would slide over the city 
in case of rain. "In 1987" is the title of this chapter. [D4,2] 

With reference to Chodruc-Duclos: "We are haunted by what was perhaps the 
remains of some rugged old citizen of Herculaneum who, having escaped from 
his underground bed, returned to walk again among us, riddled by the thousand 
furies of the volcano, living in the midst of death." Memoires de Chodruc-Duclos, 
ed. J. Arago and Edouard Gouin (Paris, 1843), vol. 1, p. 6 (preface). The first: 
flaneur among the declasses. [D4,3] 

The world in which one is bored — "So what if one is bored! What influence can it 
possibly have?" "What influence! . . . What influence, boredom, with us? But an 
enormous influence, ... a decisive influence! For ennui, you see, the Frenchman 
has a horror verging on veneration. Ennui, in his eyes, is a terrihle god with a 
devoted cult following. It is only in the grip of boredom that the Frenchman can be 
serious." Edouard Pailleron, he Monde oil Von s'ennuie (1881), Act 1, scene 2; in 
Pailleron, Theatre complet, vol. 3 (Paris <1911>), p. 279. [D4,4] 

Michelet "offers a description, full of intelligence and compassion, of the condition 
of the first specialized factory workers around 1840. There were 'true hells of 
boredom' in the spinning and weaving mills: 'Ever, ever, ever, is the unvarying 
word thundering in your ears from the automatic equipment which shakes even 
the floor. One can never get used to it.' Often the remarks of Michelet (for exam- 
ple, on reverie and the rhythms of different occupations) anticipate, on an intui- 

tive level, the experimental analyses of modern psychologists." Georges Fried- 
mann, La Crise du progres (Paris <1936>), p. 244; quotation from Michelet, Le 
Peuple (Paris, 1846), p. 83. 15 [D4,5] 

Faire drogiier, in the sense of fair e attendre, "to keep waiting," belongs to the 
argot of the armies of the Revolution and of the Empire. According to <Ferdinand> 
Brunot, Histoire de la languefranqaise, vol. 9, La Revolution et I'Empire (Paris, 
1937) <p. 997>. [D4,6] 

Parisian Life: "The contemporary scene is preserved, like a specimen imder glass, 
in a letter of recommendation to Metella given by Baron Stanislas de Frascata to 
his friend Baron Gondremarck. The writer, tied to the 'cold country' in which he 
lives, sighs for the champagne suppers, Metella's sky-blue boudoir, the songs, the 
glamor of Paris, the gay and glittering city, throbbing with warmth and life, in 
which differences of station are abolished. Metella reads the letter to the strains of 
Offenbach's music, which surrounds it with a yearning melancholy, as though 
Paris were paradise lost, and at the same time with a halo of bliss as though it were 
the paradise to come; and, as the action continues, one is gi ven the impression that 
the picture given in the letter is beginning to come to life." S. Kracauer, Jacques 
Offenbach and das Paris seiner Zeit (Amsterdam, 1937), pp. 348-349. 16 


"Romanticism ends in a theory of boredom, the characteristically modern senti- 
ment; that is, it ends in a theory of power, or at least of energy. . . . Romanticism, 
in effect, marks the recognition by the individual of a bundle of instincts which 
society has a strong interest in repressing; but, for the most part, it manifests the 
abdication of the struggle. . . . The Romantic writer . . . turns toward ... a poetry 
of refuge and escape. The effort of Balzac and of Baudelaire is exactly the reverse 
of this and tends to integrate into life the postulates which the Romantics were 
resigned to working with only on the level of art. . . . Their effort is thus linked to 
the myth according to which imagination plays an ever-increasing role in life." 
Roger Caillois, "Paris, mythe moderne," ISouvelle Revue franqaise, 25, no. 284 
(May 1, 1937), pp. 695, 697. [D4a,2] 

1839: "France is bored" (Lamartine). [D4a,3] 

Baudelaire in his essay on Guys: "Dandyism is a mysterious institution, no less 
peculiar than the duel. It is of great antiquity, Caesar, Catiline, and Alcibiades 
providing us with dazzling examples; and very widespread, Chateaubriand having 
found it in the forests and by the lakes of the New World." Baudelaire, L'Art 
romantique (Paris), p. 91. 17 [D4a,4] 

The Guys chapter in L'Art romantique, on dandies: "They are all representatives 
... of that compelling need, alas only too rare today, for combating and destroying 
triviality. . . . Dandyism is the last spark of heroism amid decadence; and the type 
of dandy discovered by our traveler in North America does nothing to invalidate 

this idea; for how can we be sure that those tribes which we call 'savage' may not in 
fact be the disjecta membra of great extinct civilizations? ... It is hardly neces- 
sary to say that when Monsieur G. sketches one of his dandies on paper, he never 
fails to give him his historical personality — his legendary personality, I would 
venture to say, if we were not speaking of the present time and of things generally 
considered frivolous." Baudelaire, L 'Art romantique, vol. 3, ed. Hachette (Paris), 
pp. 94~95. 1!l [D5.1] 

Baudelaire describes the impression that the consummate dandy must convey: "A 
rich man, perhaps, but more likely an out-of-work Hercules!" Baudelaire, L'Art 
romantique (Paris), p. 96. 19 [D5,2] 

In the essay on Guys, the crowd appears as the supreme remedy for boredom: 
'"Any man,' he said one day, in the course of one of those conversations which he 
illumines with burning glance and evocative gesture, 'any man . . . who can yet be 
bored in the heart of the multitude is a blockhead! A blockhead! And I despise 
him!" Baudelaire, U Art romantique, p. 65. 2 * [DJ5,3] 

Among all the subjects first marked out for lyric expression by Baudelaire, one 
can be put at the forefront: bad weather. [D5,4] 

As attributed to a certain "Carlin," the well-known anecdote about Deburau (the 
actor afflicted with boredom) forms the piece de resistance of the versilied Eloge de 
V ennui <Encomium to Boredom), by Charles Boissiere, of the Philotechnical Soci- 
ety (Paris, 1860). — "Carlin" is the name of a breed of dogs; it comes from the first 
name of an Italian actor who played Harlequin. [D5,5] 

"Monotony feeds on the new." Jean Vaudal, Le Tableau noir; cited in E. Jaloux, 
"L'Esprit des livres," Nouvelles litteraires, November 20, 1937. [D5,6] 

Counterpart to Blanqui's view of the world: the universe is a site of lingering 
catastrophes. [D5,7] 

On L'Eternite par les astres: Blanqui, who, on the threshold of the grave, recog- 
nizes the Fort du laureau as his last place of captivity, writes this book in order to 
open new doors in his dungeon. [D5a,l] 

On L'Eternite par les astres: Blanqui yields to bourgeois society. But he's brought 
to his knees with such force that the throne begins to totter. [D5a,2] 

On L'Eternite' par les astres: The people of the nineteenth century see the stars 
against a sky which is spread out in this text. [D5a,3] 

It may be that the figure of Blanqui surfaces in the "Litanies of Satan": "You who 
give the outlaw that serene and haughty look" (<Baudelaire, Oeuvres,> ed. Le 

Dantec, <vol. 1 [Paris, 1931], > p. 138). 21 In point of fact, Baudelaire did a drawing 
from memory that shows the head of Blanqui. [D5a,4] 

To grasp the significance of nouveaute, it is necessary to go back to novelty in 
everyday life. Why does everyone share the newest thing with someone else? 
Presumably, in order to triumph over the dead. This only where there is nothing 
really new. [D5a,5] 

Blanqui's last work, written during his last imprisonment, has remained en- 
tirely unnoticed up to now, so far as I can see. It is a cosmological speculation. 
Granted it appears, in its opening pages, tasteless and banal. But the awkward 
deliberations of the autodidact are merely the prelude to a speculation that only 
this revolutionary could develop. We may call it theological, insofar as hell is a 
subject of theology. In fact, the cosmic vision of the world which Blanqui lays out, 
taking his data from the mechanistic natural science of bourgeois society, is an 
infernal vision. At the same time, it is a complement of the society to which 
Blanqui, in his old age, was forced to concede victory. What is so unsettling is 
that the presentation is entirely lacking in irony. It is an unconditional surrender, 
but it is simultaneously the most terrible indictment of a society that projects this 
image of the cosmos — understood as an image of itself — across the heavens. 
With its trenchant style, this work displays the most remarkable similarities both 
to Baudelaire and to Nietzsche. (Letter of January 6, 1938, to Horkheimer.) 22 


From Blanqui's UEternite par les astres: "What man does not find himself some- 
times faced with two opposing courses? The one he declines would make for a far 
different life, while leaving him his particular individuality. One leads to misery, 
shame, servitude; the other, to glory and liberty. Here, a lovely woman and happi- 
ness; there, fury and desolation. I am speaking now for hoth sexes. Take your 
chances or your choice — it makes no difference, for you will not escape your 
destiny. But destiny finds no footing in infinity, which knows no alternative and 
makes room for everything. There exists a world where a man follows the road 
that, in the other world, his double did not take. His existence divides in two, a 
globe for each; it bifurcates a second time, a third time, thousands of times. He 
thus possesses fully formed doubles with innumerable variants, which, in multi- 
plying, always represent him as a person but capture only fragments of his destiny. 
All that one might have been in this world, one is in another. Along with one's 
entire existence from birth to death, experienced in a multitude of places, one also 
lives, in yet other places, ten thousand different versions of it." Cited in Gustave 
Geffroy, L 'Enferme (Paris, 1897), p. 399. [D6,l] 

From the conclusion of UEternite par les astres: "What I write at this moment in 
a cell of the Fort du Taureau I have written and shall write throughout all eter- 
nity — at a table, with a pen, clothed as I am now, in circumstances like these." 
Cited in Gustave Geffroy, UEnferme (Paris, 1897), p. 401. Right after this, Get- 

froy writes: "He thus inscribes his fate, at each instant of its duration, across the 
numberless stars. His prison cell is multiplied to infinity. Throughout the entire 
universe, he is the same confined man that he is on this earth, with his rebellious 
strength and his freedom of thought." [D6,2] 

From the conclusion of L'Eternite par les astres: "At the present time, the entire 
life of our planet, from birth to death, with all its crimes and miseries, is being 
lived partly here and partly there, day by day, on myriad kindred planets. What 
we call 'progress' is confined to each particular world, and vanishes with it. Al- 
ways and everywhere in the terrestrial arena, the same drama, the same setting, 
on the same narrow stage — a noisy humanity infatuated with its own grandeur, 
believing itself to be the universe and living in its prison as though in some im- 
mense realm, only to founder at an early date along with its globe, which has borne 
with deepest disdain the burden of human arrogance. The same monotony, the 
same immobility, on other heavenly bodies. The universe repeats itself endlessly 
and paws the ground in place." Cited in Gustave Geffroy, L'Enferme (Paris, 
1897), p. 402. [D6a,l] 

Blanqui expressly emphasizes the scientific character of liis theses, which would 
have nothing to do with Fourierist frivolities. "One must concede that each par- 
ticular combination of materials and people 'is hound to be repeated thousands of 
times in order to satisfy the demands of infinity.'" Cited in Geffroy, L'Enferme 
(Paris, 1897), p. 400. [D6a,2] 

Blanqui's misanthropy. "The variations begin with those living creatures that 
have a will of their own, or something like caprices. As soon as human beings enter 
the scene, imagination enters with them. It is not as though they have much effect 
on the planet. . . . Their turbulent activity never seriously disturbs the natural 
progression of physical phenomena, though it disrupts humanity. It is therefore 
advisable to anticipate this subversive influence, which . . . tears apart nations 
and brings down empires. Certainly these brutalities run their course without 
even scratching the terrestrial surface . The disappearance of the disruptors would 
leave no trace of their self-styled sovereign presence, and would suffice to return 
nature to its virtually unmolested virginity." Blanqui, L'Eternite <par les astres 
(Paris, 1872)>, pp. 63-64. [D6a,3] 

Final chapter (8, "Resume") of Blanqui's L'Eternite par les astres: "The entire 
universe is composed of astral systems. To create them, nature has only a hundred 
simple bodies at its disposal. Despite the great advantage it derives from these 
resources, and the innumerable combinations that these resources afford its fe- 
cundity, the result is necessarily a finite number, like that of the elements them- 
selves; and in order to fill its expanse, nature must repeat to infinity each of its 
original combinations or types. I So each heavenly body, whatever it might be, 
exists in infinite number in time and space, not only in one of its aspects but as it is 
at each second of its existence, from birth to death. All the heings distributed 

across its surface, whether large or small, living or inanimate, share the privilege 
of this perpetuity. / The earth is one of these heavenly bodies. Every human being 
is thus eternal at every second of his or her existence. What I write at this moment 
in a cell of the Fort du Taureau I have written and shall write throughout all 
eternity — at a table, with a pen, clothed as I am now, in circumstances like these. 
And thus it is for everyone. / All worlds are engulfed, one after another, in the 
revivifying ilames, to be reborn from them and consumed by them once more — 
monotonous flow of an hourglass that eternally empties and turns itself over. The 
new is always old, and the old always new. / Yet won't those who are interested in 
extraterrestrial life smile at a mathematical deduction which accords them not 
only immortality but eternity? The number of our doubles is infinite in time and 
space. One cannot in good conscience demand anything more. These doubles exist 
in flesh and bone — indeed, in trousers and jacket, in crinoline and chignon. They 
are by no means phantoms; they are the present eternalized. / Here, nonetheless, 
lies a great drawback: there is no progress, alas, hut merely vulgar revisions and 
reprints. Such are the exemplars, the ostensible 'original editions,' of all the 
worlds past and all the worlds to come. Only the chapter on bifurcations is still 
open to hope. Let us not forget: all that one might have been in this world, one is 
in another. I In this world, progress is for our descendants alone. They will have 
more of a chance than we did. All the beautiful things ever seen on our world have, 
of course, already been seen — are being seen at this instant and will always be 
seen — by our descendants, and by their doubles who have preceded and will fol- 
low them. Scions of a finer humanity, they have already mocked and reviled our 
existence on dead worlds, while overtaking and succeeding us. They continue to 
scorn us on the living worlds from which we have disappeared, and their contempt 
for us will have no end on the worlds to come. / They and we, and all the inhabi- 
tants of our planet, are reborn prisoners of the moment and of the place to which 
destiny has assigned us in the series of Earth's avatars. Our continuedlife depends 
on that of the planet. We are merely phenomena that are ancillary to its resurrec- 
tions. Men of the nineteenth century, the hour of our apparitions is fixed forever, 
and always brings us back the very same ones, or at most with a prospect of 
felicitous variants. There is nothing here that will much gratify the yearning for 
improvement. What to do? I have sought not at all my pleasure, but only the truth. 
Here there is neither revelation nor prophecy, but rather a simple deduction on 
the basis of spectral analysis and Laplacian cosmogony. These two discoveries 
make us eternal. Is it a windfall? Let us profit from it. Is it a mystification? Let us 
resign ourselves to it. / . . . / At bottom, this eternity of the human being among 
the stars is a melancholy thing, and this sequestering of kindred worlds by the 
inexorable barrier of space is even more sad. So many identical populations pass 
away without suspecting one another's existence! But no — this has finally been 
discovered, in the nineteenth century. Yet who is inclined to believe it? / Until 
now, the past has, for us, meant barbarism, whereas the future has signified pro- 
gress, science, happiness, illusion! This past, on all our counterpart worlds, has 
seen the most brilliant civilizations disappear without leaving a trace, and they will 
continue to disappear without leaving a trace. The future will witness yet again, on 
billions of worlds, the ignorance, folly, and cruelty of our bygone eras! / At the 

present time, the entire life of our planet, from birth to death, with all its crimes 
and miseries, is being lived partly here and partly there, day by day, on myriad 
kindred planets. What we call 'progress' is confined to each particular world, and 
vanishes with it. Always and everywhere in the terrestrial arena, the same drama, 
the same setting, on the same narrow stage — a noisy humanity infatuated with its 
own grandeur, believing itself to be the universe and living in its prison as though 
in some immense realm, only to founder at an early date along with its globe, which 
has borne with deepest disdain the burden of human arrogance. The same monot- 
ony, the same immobility, on other heavenly bodies. The universe repeats itself 
endlessly and paws the ground in place. In infinity, eternity performs — imper- 
turbably — the same routines." Auguste Blanqui, L'Eternite par les astres: Hy- 
pothese astronomique (Paris, 1872), pp. 73-76. The elided paragraph dwells on 
the "consolation" afforded by the idea that the doubles of loved ones departed 
from Earth are at this very hour keeping our own doubles company on another 
planet. [D7; D7a] 

"Let us think this thought in its most terrible form: existence as it is, without 
meaning or aim, yet recurring inevitably without any finale into nothingness: the 
eternal return [p. 45]. . . . We deny end goals: if existence had one, it would have 
to have been reached." Friedrich Nietzsche, Gesammelte Werke (Munich <1926>), 
vol. 18 {The Will to Power, book 1), p. 46. 23 [D8,l] 

"The doctrine of eternal recurrence would have scholarly presuppositions." 
Nietzsche, Gesammelte Werke (Munich), vol. 18 (The Will to Power, book 1), 
p. 49. 24 [D8,2] 

"The old habit, however, of associating a goal with every event ... is so powerful 
that it recmires an effort for a thinker not to fall into thinking of the very aimless- 
ness of the world as intended. This notion — that the world intentionally avoids a 
goal . . . — must occur to all those who would like to force on the world the capacity 
for eternal novelty [p. 369]. . . . The world, as force, may not be thought of as 
unlimited, for it cannot be so thought of. . . . Thus — the world also lacks the 
capacity for eternal novelty." Nietzsche, Gesammelte Werke, vol. 19 (The Will to 
Power, hook 4), p. 370. 25 [D8,3] 

"The world . . . lives on itself: its excrements are its nourishment." Nietzsche, 
Gesammelte Werke, vol. 19 (The Will to Power, hook 4), p. 3 71. 26 [D8,4] 

The world "without goal, unless the joy of the circle is itself a goal; without will, 
unless a ring feels good will toward itself." Nietzsche, Gesammelte Werke, vol. 19 
(The Will to Power, hook 4), p. 374. 27 [D8,5] 

On eternal recurrence: "The great thought as a Medusa head: all features of the 
world become motionless, a frozen death throe." Friedrich Nietzsche, Gesammelte 
Werke (Munich <1925>), vol. 14 (Unpublished Papers, 1882-1888), p. 188. 


"We have created the weightiest thought — now let us create the being for whom it 
is light and pleasing!" Nietzsche, Gesammelte Werke (Munich), vol. 14 (Unpub- 
lished Papers, 1882-1888), p. 179. [D8,7] 

Analogy between Engels and Blanqui: each turned to the natural sciences late in 
life. [D8,8] 

"If the world may be thought of as a certain definite cpiantity of force and as a 
certain definite number of centers of force — and every other representation re- 
mains . . . useless — it follows that, in the great dice game of existence, it must pass 
through a calculable number of combinations. In infinite time, every possible 
combination would at some time or another be realized; more: it would be realized 
an infinite number of times. And since between every combination and its next 
recurrence all other possible combinations would have to take place, ... a circu- 
lar movement of absolutely identical series is thus demonstrated. . . . This concep- 
tion is not simply a mechanistic conception; for if it were that, it would not 
condition an infinite recurrence of identical cases but a final state. Because the 
world has not reached this, mechanistic theory must be considered an imperfect 
and merely provisional hypothesis." Nietzsche, Gesammelte Werke (Munich 
<1926>), vol. 19 (The Will to Power, book 4), p. 373. 2,i [D8a,l] 

In the idea of eternal recurrence, the historicism of the nineteenth century cap- 
sizes. As a result, every tradition, even the most recent, becomes the legacy of 
something that has already run its course in the immemorial night of the ages. 
Tradition henceforth assumes the character of a phantasmagoria in which primal 
history enters the scene in ultramodern get-up. [D8a,2] 

Nietzsche's remark that the doctrine of eternal recurrence does not embrace 
mechanism seems to turn the phenomenon of the perpetuum mobile (for the world 
would be nothing else, according to his teachings) into an argument against the 
mechanistic conception of the world. [D8a,3] 

On the problem of modernity and antiquity. "The existence that has lost its stabil- 
ity and its direction, and the world that has lost its coherence and its significance, 
come together in the will of 'the eternal recurrence of the same' as the attempt to 
repeat — on the peak of modernity, in a symbol — the life which the Greeks lived 
within the living cosmos of the visible world. " Karl Lowith, ISietzsches Philosophic 
der ewigen Wiederkunft des Gleichen (Berlin, 1935), p. 83. [D8a,4] 

LEternite par les astres was written four, at most five, years after Baudelaire's 
death (contemporaneously with the Paris Commune?). — This text shows what 
the stars are doing in that world from which Baudelaire, with good reason, 
excluded them. [D9,l] 

The idea of eternal recurrence conjures the phantasmagoria of happiness from 
the misery of the Founders Years. 29 This doctiine is an attempt to reconcile the 

mutually contradictory tendencies of desire: that of repetition and that of eter- 
nity. Such heroism has its counterpart in the heroism of Baudelaire, who conjures 
the phantasmagoria of modernity from the misery of the Second Empire. 


The notion of eternal return appeared at a time when the bourgeoisie no longer 
dared count on the impending development of the system of production which 
they had set going. The thought of Zarathustra and of eternal recurrence belongs 
together with the embroidered motto seen on pillows: "Only a quarter hour." 


Critique of the doctrine of eternal recurrence: "As natural scientist . . . , Nietzsche 
is a philosophizing dilettante, and as founder of a religion he is a 'hybrid of 
sickness and will to power'" [preface to Ecce Homo] (p. 83). :!0 "The entire doctrine 
thus seems to be nothing other than an experiment of the human will and an 
attempt to eternalize all our doings and failings, an atheistic surrogate for religion. 
With this accords the homiletic style and the composition of Zarathustra, which 
down to its tiniest details often imitates the New Testament" (pp. 86-87). Karl 
Lowith, Nietzsches Philosophie der eivigen Wiederkunft des Gleichen (Berlin, 
1935). [D9,4] 

There is a handwritten draft in which Caesar instead of Zarathustra is the bearer 
of Nietzsche's tidings (Liwith, p. 73). That is of no little moment. It underscores 
the fact that Nietzsche had an inkling of his doctrine's complicity with imperial- 
ism. [D9,5] 

Lowith calls Nietzsche's "new divination . . . the synthesis of divination from the 
stars with divination from nothingness, which is the last verity in the desert of the 
freedom of individual capacity" (p. 81). [D9,6] 

From "Les Etoiles" <The Stars), by Lamartine: 

Thus these globes of gold, these islands of light, 

Sought instinctively hy the dreaming eye, 

Flash up by the thousands from fugitive shadow, 

Like glittering dust on the tracks of night; 

And the breath of the evening that flies in its wake 

Sends them swirling through the radiance of space. 

All that we seek — love, truth, 

These fruits of the sky, fallen on earth's palate, 

Throughout your brilliant climes we long to see — 

Nourish forever the children of life; 

And one day man perhaps, his destiny fulfilled, 

Will recover in you all the things he has lost. 

<Alphonse de> Lamartine, Oeuvres completes, vol. 1 (Paris, 1850), pp. 221, 224 
(Meditations). This meditation closes with a reverie in which Lamartine is pleased 
to imagine himself transformed into a star among stars. [D9a,l] 

From "L'Infini clans les cieux"<Infinity in the Skies>, by Lamartine: 

Man, nonetheless, that indiscoverable insect, 

Crawling about the hollows of an obscure orb, 

Takes the measure of these fiery planets, 

Assigns them their place in the heavens, 

Thinking, with hands that cannot manage the compass, 

To sift suns like grains of sand. 

And Saturn bedimmed by its distant ring! 

Lamartine, Oeuvres completes (Paris, 1850), pp. 81-82, 82 (Harmonies poetiques 
et religieuses ). [D9a,2] 

Dislocation of hell: "And, finally, what is the place of punishments? All regions of 
the universe in a condition analogous to that of the earth, and still worse." Jean 
Reynaud, Tare et del (Paris, 1854), p. 377. This uncommonly fatuous book pre- 
sents its theological syncretism, its philosophic religieuse, as the new theology. The 
eternity of hell's torments is a heresy: "The ancient trilogy of Earth, Sky, and 
Underworld finds itself reduced, in the end, to the druidical duality of Earth and 
Sky" (p. xiii). [D9a,3] 

Waiting is, in a sense, the lined interior of boredom. (Hebel: boredom waits for 
death.) [D9a,4] 

"I always arrived first. It was my lot to wait for her." J. -J. Rousseau, Les Confes- 
sions, ed. Hilsum (Paris <1931>), vol. 3, p. 115. 31 [D9a,5] 

First intimation of the doctrine of eternal recurrence at the end of the fourth book 
of Die frohliche Wissenschaft: "How, if some day or night a demon were to sneak 
after you into your loneliest loneliness and say to you: 'This life as you now live it 
and have lived it, you will have to live once more and innumerable times more; and 
there will he nothingnewin it, but every pain and every joy and every thought and 
sigh and everything immeasurably small or great in your life must return to you — 
all in the same succession and sequence — even this spider and this moonlight 
between the trees, and even this moment and I myself. The eternal hourglass of 
existence is turned over and over, and you with it, a dust grain of dust. ' Would you 
not . . . curse the demon who spoke thus? Or did you once experience a tremen- 
dous moment when you would have answered him: 'You are a god and never have 
I heard anything more godly!'" 1 * 2 Cited in Lowith, ISietzsches Philosophie der 
ewigen Wiederkunft <des Gleichen (Berlin, 1935)>, p. 57-58. [D10,l] 

Blanqui's theory as a repetition du my the — a fundamental example of the primal 
history of the nineteenth century. In every century, humanity has to be held back 
a grade in school. See the basic formulation of the problem of primal history, of 
Urgeschichte, in N3a,2; also N4,l. [D10,2] 

"Eternal return" is the fundamental form of the urgeschichtlichen, mythic conscious- 
ness. (Mythic because it does not reflect.) [Dl0,3] 

L'Eternite par les astres should he compared with the spirit of '48, as it animates 
Reynaud's Terre et del. With regard to this, Cassou: "On discovering his earthly 
destiny, man feels a sort of vertigo and cannot at first reconcile himself to this 
destiny alone. He must link it up to the greatest possible immensity of time and 
space. Only in the context of its most sweeping breadth will he intoxicate himself 
with heing, with movement, with progress. Only then can he in all confidence and 
in all dignity pronounce the sublime words of Jean Reynaud: 'I have long made a 
practice of the universe. '" "We find nothing in the universe that cannot serve to 
elevate us, and we are genuinely elevated only in taking advantage of what the 
universe offers. The stars themselves , in their sublime hierarchy, are hut a series 
of steps by which we mount progressively toward infinity." <Jean> Cassou, Quar- 
ante-huit <Paris, 1939>, pp. 49, 48. [D10.4] 

Life within the magic circle of eternal return makes for an existence that never 
emerges from the auratic. [D10a,l] 

As life becomes more subject to administrative norms, people must learn to wait 
more. Games of chance possess the great charm of freeing people from having to 
wait. [D10a,2] 

The boulevardier (feuilletonist) has to wait, whereupon he really waits. Hugo's 
"Waiting is life" applies first of all to him. [D10a,3] 

The essence of the mythical event is return. Inscribed as a hidden figure in such 
events is the futility that furrows the brow of some of the heroic personages of 
the underworld (Tantalus, Sisyphus, the Danaides). Tfhnking once again the 
thought of eternal recurrence in the nineteenth century makes Nietzsche the 
figure in whom a mythic fatality is realized anew. (The hell of eternal damnation 
has perhaps impugned the ancient idea of eternal recurrence at its most formida- 
ble point, substituting an eternity of torments for the eternity of a cycle.) 


The belief in progress — in an infinite perfectibility understood as an infinite 
ethical task — and the representation of eternal return are complementary. They 
are the indissoluble antinomies in the face of which the dialectical conception of 
historical time must be developed. In this conception, the idea of eternal return 
appears precisely as that "shallow rationalism" which the belief in progress is 
accused of being, while faith in progress seems no less to belong to the mythic 
mode of thought than does the idea of eternal return. [D10a,5] 

[Haussmannization, Barricade Fighting] 

The flowery realm of decorations, 
The charm of landscape, of architecture, 
And all the effect of scenery rest 
Solely on the law of perspective. 

— Franz Bohle, 'llieater-Catechumus, oder humoristuche Erklirwig ver- 
se/ riedener vorziiglich im Buhnenleben ublicher Fremdworter (Munich), 
p. 74 

I venerate the Beautiful, the Good, and all things great; 
Beautiful nature, on which great art rests — 
How it enchants the ear and charms the eye! 
I love spring in blossom: women and roses. 

— Confession d'un lion devenu vieux (Baron Haussmann, 1888) 

The breathless capitals 

Opened themselves to the cannon. 

— Pierre Dupont, Le Chant des etudiants (Paris, 1849) 

The characteristic and, properly speaking, sole decoration of the Biedemieier 
room "was afforded by the curtains, which — extremely refined and compounded 
preferably from several fabrics of different colors — were furnished by the uphol- 
sterer. For nearly a whole century afterward, interior decoration amounts, in 
theory, to providing instructions to upholsterers for the tasteful arrangement of 
draperies." Max von Boehn, Die Mode im XIX. Jahrhundert , vol. 2 (Munich, 
1907), p. 130. This is something like the interior's perspective on the window. 


Perspectival character of the crinoline, with its manifold flounces. At least five to 
six petticoats were worn underneath. [El, 2] 

Peep-show rhetoric, perspectival figures of speech: "Incidentally, the figure of 
greatest effect, employed by all French orators from their podiums and tribunes, 
sounds pretty much like this: 'There was in the Middle Ages a book which concen- 

trated the spirit of the times as a mirror concentrates the rays of the sun, a book 
which towered up in majestic glory to the heavens like a primeval forest, a hook in 
which ... a hook for which . . . finally, a hook which . . . hy which and through 
which [the most long-winded specifications follow] ... a book ... a book . . . this 
book was the Divine Comedy.'' Loud applause." Karl Gutzkow, Briefe aus Paris 
(Leipzig, 1842), vol. 2 , pp. 151-152. [El,3] 

Strategic basis for the perspectival articulation of the city. A contemporary seek- 
ing to justify the construction of large thoroughfares under Napoleon III speaks 
of them as "unfavorable 'to the habitual tactic of local insurrection."' Marcel 
Poete, Une vie de cite (Paris, 1925), p. 469. "Open up this area of continual 
disturbances." Baron Haussmann, in a memorandum calling for the extension of 
the Boulevard de Strasbourg to Chatelet. Emile de Labedolliere, Le Nouveau 
Paris, p. 52. But even earlier than this: "They are paving Paris with wood in 
order to deprive the Revolution of building materials. Out of wooden blocks 
there will be no more barricades constructed." Gutzkow, Briefe aus Paris, vol. 1 , 
pp. 60-61. What this means can be gathered from the fact that in 1830 there 
were 6,000 barricades. [El,4] 

"In Paris . . . they are fleeing the arcades, so long in fashion, as one flees stale air. 
The arcades are dying. From time to time, one of them is closed, like the sad 
Passage Delorme, where, in the wilderness of the gallery, female figures of a taw- 
dry antiquity used to dance along the shopfronts, as in the scenes from Pompeii 
interpreted hy Guerinon Hersent. The arcade that for the Parisian was a sort of 
salon-walk, where you strolled and smoked and chatted, is now nothing more than 
a species of refuge which you think of when it rains. Some of the arcades maintain 
a certain attraction on account of this or that famed establishment still to be found 
there. But it is the tenant's renown that prolongs the excitement, or rather the 
death agony, of the place. The arcades have one great defect for modern Parisians: 
you could say that, just like certain paintings done from stifled perspectives, 
they're in need of air." Jules Claretie, La Vie a Paris, 1895 (Paris, 1896), pp. 47ff. 


The radical transformation of Paris was carried out under Napoleon III mainly 
along the axis running through the Place de la Concorde and the Hotel de Ville. 
It may be that the Franco-Prussian War of 1870 was a blessing for the architec- 
tural image of Paris, seeing that Napoleon III had intended to alter whole dis- 
tricts of the city. Stahr thus writes, in 1857, that one had to make haste now to see 
the old Paris, for "the new ruler, it seems, has a mind to leave but little of it 
standing." < Adolf Stahr, Nach Jiinfjahren, vol. 1 (Oldenburg, 1857), p. 36. > 


The stifled perspective is plush for the eyes. Plush is the material of the age of 
Louis Philippe. D Dust and Rain D [El, 7] 

Regarding "stifled perspectives": '"You can come to the panorama to do drawings 
from nature,' David told his students." Emile de LabedoJliere, he Nouveau Paris 
(Paris), p. 31. [El,8] 

Among the most impressive testimonies to the age's unquenchable thirst for 
perspectives is the perspective painted on the stage of the opera in the Musee 
Grevin. (This arrangement should be described.) [El,9] 

"Having, as they do, the appearance of walling-in a massive eternity, Hauss- 
mann's urban works are a wholly appropriate representation of the absolute gov- 
erning principles of the Empire: repression of every individual formation, every 
organic self-development, 'fundamental hatred of all individuality."' J. J. Honeg- 
ger, Grundsteine einer allgemeinen Kulturgeschichte der neuesten Zeit, vol. 5 
(Leipzig, 1874), p. 326. But Louis Philippe was already known as the Roi-Macon 
< Mason King>. [Ela.l] 

On the transformation of the city under Napoleon III: "The subsoil has been 
profoundly disturbed by the installation of gas mains and the construction of 
sewers. . . . Never hefore in Paris have so many building supplies been moved 
about, so many houses and apartment buildings constructed, so many monuments 
restored or erected, so many facades dressed with cut stone. ... It was necessary 
to act quickly and to take advantage of properties acquired at a very high cost: a 
double stimulus. In Paris, shallow basements have taken the place of deep cellars, 
which required excavations a full story deep. The use of concrete and cement, 
which was first made possible by the discoveries of Vicat, has contributed both to 
the reasonable cost and to the boldness of these substructions." E. Levasseur, 
Ilistoire des classes ouvrieres et de Vindustrie en France de 1789 a 1870, vol. 2 
(Paris, 1904), pp. 528-529. D Arcades D [Ela,2] 

"Paris, as we find it in the period following the Revolution of 1848, was about to 
become uninhabitable. Its population had been greatly enlarged and unsettled by 
the incessant activity of the railroad (whose rails extended further each day and 
linked up with those of neighboring countries), and now this population was suffo- 
cating in the narrow, tangled, putrid alleyways in which it was forcibly confined." 
<Maxime> Du Camp, Paris, vol. 6 <Paris, 1875>, p. 253. [Ela,3] 

Expropriations under Haussmann. "Certain barristers made a specialty of this 
kind of case. . . . They defended real estate expropriations, industrial expropria- 
tions, tenant expropriations, sentimental expropriations; they spoke of a roof for 
fathers and a cradle for infants. . . . 'How did you make your fortune?' a parvenu 
was asked: 'I've been expropriated,' came the response. ... A new industry was 
created, which, on the pretext of taking in hand the interests of the expropriated, 
dM not shrink from the basest fraud. ... It sought out small manufacturers and 
equipped them with detailed account books, false inventories, and fake merchan- 

dise that often was nothing more than logs wrapped in paper. It would even pro- 
cure groups of customers to fill the shop on the day the jury made their prescribed 
visit. It fabricated leases — exaggerated, extended, antedated— on sheets of old 
paper bearing official stamps, which it had managed to procure. It would have 
stores newly repainted and staffed with improvised clerks, whom it paid three 
francs a day. It was a sort of midnight gang that rifled the till of the city govern- 
ment." Du Camp, Paris, vol. 6, pp. 255-256. [Ela,4] 

Engels' critique of barricade tactics: "The most that the insurrection can actually 
implement in the way of tactical practice is the correct construction and defense of 
a single barricade." But "even in the classic period of street fighting, . . . the 
barricade produced more of a moral than a material effect. It was a means of 
shaking the steadfastness of the military. If it held on until this was attained, then 
victory was won; if not, there was defeat." Friedrich Engels, Introduction to Karl 
Marx, Die Klassenkmmpfe in Frankreich, 1848-1850 (Berlin, 1895), pp. 13, 14. 1 


No less retrograde than the tactic of civil war was the ideology of class struggle. 
Marx on the February Revolution: "In the ideas of the proletarians, . . . who 
confused the finance aristocracy with the bourgeoisie in general; in the imagina- 
tion of good old republicans, who denied the very existence of classes or, at most, 
admitted them as a result of the constitutional monarchy; in the hypocritical 
phrases of the segments of the bourgeoisie up till now excluded from power — in 
all these, the rule of the bourgeoisie was abolished with the introduction of the 
republic. All the royalists were transformed into republicans, and all the million- 
aires of Paris into workers. The phrase which corresponded to this imagined 
liquidation of class relations was fraternite." Karl Marx, Die Klassenkcimfife in 
Frankreich (Berlin, 1895), p. 29. 2 [Ela,6] 

In a manifesto in which he proclaims the right to work, Lamartine speaks of 
the "advent of the industrial Christ." Journal des economistes, 10 (1845), p. 212 , :i 
D Industry D [Ela,7] 

"The reconstruction of the city . , . , by obliging the workers to find lodgings in 
outlying arrondissements, has dissolved the bonds of neighborhood that pre- 
viously united them with the bourgeoisie." Levasseur, Histoire des classes ou- 
vrieres et de Vindustrie en France, vol. 2 <Paris, 1904.>, p. 775. [E2,l] 

"Paris is musty and close." Louis Veuillot, Les Odeurs de Paris (Paris, 1914), 
p. 14. [E2,2] 

Parks, squares, and puhlic gardens first installed under Napoleon III. Between 
forty and fifty were created. [E2,3] 

Construction in the Faubourg Saint-Antoine: Boulevard Prince Eugene, Boule- 
vard Mazas, and Boulevard Richard Lenoir, as strategic axes. [E2,4] 

The heightened expression of the dull perspective is what you get in panoramas. 
It signifies nothing to their detriment but only illuminates their style when Max 
Brod writes: "Interiors of churches, or of palaces or art galleries, do not make for 
beautiful panorama images. They come across as flat, dead, obstructed." <Max 
Brod,> liber die Schonheit hasslicher Bilder (Leipzig, 1913), p. 63. An accurate 
description, except that it is precisely in this way that the panoramas serve the 
epoch's will to expression. □ Dioramas G [E2,5] 

On June 9, 1810, at the Theatre de la Rue de Chartres, a play by Barre, Radet, 
and Desf ontaines is given its first performance. Entitled Monsieur Durelief, ou Les 
Embellissements de Paris, it presents a series of rapid scenes as in a review, show- 
ing the changes wrought in Parisian life by Napoleon I. "An architect who is the 
bearer of one of those significant names formerly in use on the stage, M. Durelief, 
has fabricated a miniature Paris, which he intends to exhibit. Having labored 
thirty years on this project, he thinks he has finished it at last; but suddenly a 
'creative spirit' appears, and proceeds to prune and sharpen the work, creating 
the need for incessant corrections and additions: 

This vast and wealthy capital, 
Adorned with his fine monuments, 
I keep as a cardboard model in my room, 
And I follow the embellishments. 
But always I find myself in arrears — 
By my word, it's getting desperate: 
Even in miniature, one cannot do 
What that man does full-scale." 

The play ends with an apotheosis of Marie-Louise, whose portrait the goddess of 
the city of Paris holds, as her loveliest ornament, high above the heads of the 
audience. Cited in Theodore Muret, L'Histoire par le themtre, 1789-1851 (Paris, 

Use of omnibuses to build barricades. The horses were unharnessed, the passen- 
gers were put off, the vehicle was turned over, and the flag was fastened to an axle. 

On the expropriations: "Before the war, there was talk of demolishing the Passage 
du Caire in order to put a circus on the site. Today there's a shortage of funds, and 
the proprietors (all forty-four of them) are hard to please. Let's hope there's a 
shortage of funds for a long time to come and the proprietors become still harder to 
please. The hideous gap of the Boulevard Haussmann at the corner of the Rue 
Drouot, with all the charming houses it has brought down, should content us for 
the moment." Paul Leautaud, "Vieux Paris," Mercure de France (October 15, 

1865), vol. l,pp. 253-254. 



1927), p. 503. 


Haussmann and the Chamber of Deputies: "One day, in an excess of terror, they 
accused him of having created a desert in the very center of Paris! That desert was 
the Boulevard Sebastopol." Le Corbusier, Urbanisme (Paris <1925>), p. 149.' 1 


Very important: "Haussmann's Equipment" — illustrations in Le Corbusier, Ur- 
banisme, p. 150. 5 Various shovels, picks, wheelbarrows, and so on. [E2,U] 

Jules Ferry, Comptesfantastiques d'Haussmann <Paris, 1868>. Pamphlet directed 
against Haussmann's autocratic management of finances. [E2,ll] 

"The avenues [Haussmann] cut were entirely arbitrary: they were not based on 
strict deductions of the science of town planning. The measures he took were of a 
financial and military character." Le Corbusier, Urbanisme (Paris), p. 250/' 


"... the impossibility of obtaining permission to photograph an adorable wax- 
work figure in the Musee Grevin, on the left, between the hall of modern political 
celebrities and the hall at the rear of which, behind a curtain, is shown 'an 
evening at the theater': it is a woman fastening her garter in the shadows, and is 
the only statue I know of with eyes — the eyes of provocation." Andre Breton, 
Nadja (Paris, 1928), pp. 199-200. 7 Very striking fusion of the motif of fashion 
with that of perspective. D Fashion D [E2a,2] 

To the characterization of this suffocating world of plush belongs the description 
of the role of flowers in interiors. After the fall of Napoleon Bonaparte, an 
attempt was made at first to return to rococo. But this was hardly feasible. The 
European situation after the Restoration was the following: "Typically, Corin- 
thian columns are used almost everywhere. . . . This pomp has something 
oppressive about it, just as the restless bustle accompanying the city's trans- 
formation robs natives and foreigners alike of both breathing space and space for 
reflection. . . . Every stone bears the mark of despotic power, and all the ostenta- 
tion makes the atmosphere, in the literal sense of the words, heavy and close. . . . 
One grows dizzy with this novel display; one chokes and anxiously gasps for 
breath. The feverish haste with which the work of several centuries is accom- 
plished in a decade weighs on the senses." Die Grenzboten,]oumcd of politics and 
literature (<Leipzig,> 1861), semester 2, vol. 3, pp. 143-144 ("Die Pariser Kunst- 
ausstellung von 1861 und die bildende Kunst des 19"" Jahrhunderts in Frank- 
reich"). The author probably Julius Meyer. These remarks are aimed at 
Haussmann. D Plush □ [E2a,3] 

Remarkable propensity for structures that convey and connect — as, of course, 
the arcades do. And this connecting or mediating function has a literal and spatial 
as well as a figurative and stylistic bearing. One thinks, above all, of the way the 
Louvre links up with the Tuileries. "The imperial govermnent has built practi- 

cally no new independent buildings, aside from barracks. But, then, it has been 
all the more zealous in completing the barely begun and half -finished works of 
previous centuries. ... At first sight, it seems strange that the government has 
made it its business to preserve existing monuments. . . . The government, how- 
ever, does not aim to pass over the people like a storm; it wants to engrave itself 
lastingly in their existence. . . . Let the old houses collapse, so long as the old 
monuments remain." Die Grenzboten (1861), semester 2, vol. 3, pp. 139-141 
("Die Pariser Kunstausstellung von 1861"). □ Dream House D [E2a,4] 

Connection of the railroads to Haussmann's projects. From a memorandum by 
Haussmann: "The railway stations are today the principal entryways into Paris. 
To put them in communication with the city center by means of large arteries is a 
necessity of theiirst order." E. de Labedolliere, Histoire du nouveau Paris, p. 32. 
This applies in particular to the so-called Boulevard du Centre: the extension of 
the Boulevard de Strasbourg to Chatelet by what is today the Boulevard Sebas- 
topol. [E2a,5] 

Opening of the Boulevard Sebastopollike the unveiling of a monument. "At 2:30 in 
the afternoon, at the moment the [imperial] procession was approaching from the 
Boulevard Saint-Denis, an immense scrim, which had masked the entrance to the 
Boulevard de Sevastopol from this side, was drawn like a curtain. This drapery 
had been hung between two Moorish columns, on the pedestals of which were 
figures representing the arts, the sciences, industry, and commerce." Labedol- 
liere, Histoire du nouveau Paris, p. 32. [E2a,6] 

Haussmann's predilection for perspectives, for long open vistas, represents an 
attempt to dictate art forms to technology (the technology of city planning). This 
always results in kitsch. [E2a,7] 

Haussmann on himself: "Born in Paris, in the old Faubourg du Roule, which is 
joined now to the Fauhourg Saint-Honore at the point where the Boulevard 
Haussmann ends and the Avenue de Friedland begins; student at the College 
Henri IV and the old Lycee Napoleon, which is situated on the Montagne Sainte- 
Genevieve, where I later studied at the law school and, at odd moments, at the 
Sorbonne and the College de France. I took walks, moreover, through all parts of 
the city, and I was often absorbed, during my youth, in protracted contemplation 
of a map of this many-sided Paris , a map which revealed to me weaknesses in the 
network of public streets. / Despite my long residence in the provinces (no less 
than twenty-two years!), I have managed to retain my memories and impressions 
of former times, so that, when I was suddenly called upon, some days ago, to direct 
the transformation of the Capital of the Empire (over which the Tuileries and City 
Hall are currently at loggerheads), I felt myself, in fact, better prepared than one 
might have supposed to fulfill this complex mission, and ready, in any case, to 
enter boldly into the heart of the problems to be resolved." Memoires du Baron 
Haussmann, vol. 2 (Paris, 1890), pp. 34—35. Demonstrates very well how it is 

often distance alone that, intervening hetween plan and work, enahles the plan to 
he realized. [E3,l] 

How Baron Haussmann advanced upon the dream city that Paris still was in 1860. 
From an article of 1882: "There were hills in Paris, even on the Boulevards. . . . 
We lacked water, markets, light in those remote times — scarcely thirty years ago. 
Some gas jets had begun to appear — that is all. We lacked Churches, too. A num- 
ber of the more ancient ones, including the most beautiful, were serving as stores, 
barracks, or offices. The others were wholly concealed by a growth of tumbledown 
hovels. Still, the Railroads existed; each day in Paris they discharged torrents of 
travelers who could neither lodge in our houses nor roam through our tortuous 
streets. / . . . He [Haussmann] demolished some qumrtiers — one might say, entire 
towns. There were cries that he would hring on the plague; he tolerated such 
outcries and gave us instead — through his well-considered architectural break- 
throughs — air, health, and life. Sometimes it was a Street that he created, some- 
times an Avenue or Boulevard; sometimes it was a Square, a Public Garden, a 
Promenade. He established Hospitals, Schools, Campuses. He gave us a whole 
river. He dug magnificent sewers." Memoires du Baron Haussmann, vol. 2 (Paris, 
1890), pp. x, xi. Extracts from an article by Jules Simon in he Gaulois, May 1882. 
The numerous capital letters appear to he a characteristic orthographic interven- 
tion hy Haussmann. [E3,2] 

From a conversation, later on, between Napoleon III and Haussmann. Napoleon: 
"How right you are to maintain that the People of France, who are generally 
thought so fickle, are at bottom the most routine people in the world!" "Yes, Sire, 
though I would add: with regard to things! ... I myself am charged with the 
double offense of having unduly disturbed the Population of Paris by boulever- 
sant, by 'boulevardizing,' almost all the quartiers of the city, and of having al- 
lowed it to keep the same profile in the same setting for too long." Memoires du 
Baron Haussmann, vol. 2 (Paris, 1890), pp. 18-19. <Compare E9,l.> [E3,3] 

From a discussion between Napoleon III and Haussmann on the latter's assuming 
his duties in Paris. Haussmann: "I would add that, although the population of 
Paris as a whole was sympathetic to the plans for the transformation — or, as it was 
called then, the 'embellishment' — of the Capital of the Empire, the greater part of 
the bourgeoisie and almost all the aristocracy were hostile." Why though? 
Memoires du Baron Haussmann, vol. 2 (Paris, 1890), p. 52. [E3,4] 

"I left Munich on the sixth of Fehruary, spent ten days in archives in northern 
Italy, and arrived in Rome under a pouring rain. I found the Haussmannization of 
the city well advanced." Briefe von Ferdinand Gregorovius an den Staatssekretar 
Hermann von Thile, ed. Hermann von Petersdorff (Berlin, 1894), p. 110. 


Nickname for Haussmann: "Pasha Osman." He himself makes the comment, with 
reference to his providing the city with spring water: "I must build myself an 

?3 aqueduct." Another bon mot: "My titles? ... I have been named artist-demoli- 

^ tionist." [E3,6] 



"In 1864, defending the arbitrary character of the city's government, [Hauss- 
k mann] adopted a tone of rare boldness. 'For its inhabitants, Paris is either a great 

'g marketplace of consumption, a giant stockyard of labor, an arena of ambitions, or 

g simply a rendezvous of pleasures. It is not their home. . . .' Then the statement 

^ that polemicists will attach to his reputation like a stone: 'If there are a great many 

.g who come to find an honorable situation in the city, . . . there are also others, 

veritable nomads in the midst of Parisian society, who are absolutely destitute of 
U municipal sentiment.' And, recalling that everything — railroads, administrative 

£ networks, branches of national activity — eventually leads to Paris, he concluded: 

jjS Tt is thus not surprising that in France, country of aggregation and of order, the 

capital almost always has been placed, with regard to its communal organization, 
under an emergency regime."' Georges Laronze, he Baron Haussmann (Paris, 
1932), pp. 172-173. Speech of November 28, 1864. [E3a,l] 

Political cartoons represented "Paris as bounded by the wharves of the English 
Channel and those of the south of France, by the highways of the Rhine valley and 
of Spain; or, according to Cham, as the city which gets for Christmas the houses in 
the suburbs! . . . One caricature shows the Rue de Rivoli stretching to the hori- 
zon." Georges Laronze, he Baron Haussmann (Paris, 1932), pp. 148-149. 


"New arteries . . . would link the center of Paris with the railroad stations, reduc- 
ing congestion in the latter. Others would take part in the battle against poverty 
and revolution; they would be strategic routes, breaking through the sources of 
contagion and the centers of unrest, and permitting, with the influx of better air, 
the arrival of an armed force, hence connecting, like the Rue de Turbigo, the 
government with the barracks, and, like the Boulevard du Prince-Eugene, the 
barracks with the suburbs." Georges Laronze, he Baron Haussmann, pp. 137— 
138. [E3a,3] 

"An independent deputy, the comte de Durfort-Civrac, . . . objected that these 
new boulevards, which were supposed to aid in repressing disturbances, would 
also make them more likely because, in order to construct them, it was necessary 
to assemble a mass of workers." Georges Laronze, he Baron Haussmann, p. 133. 


Haussmann celebrates the birthday — or name day (April 5)? — of Napoleon III. 
"Running the length of the Champs-Elysees, from the Place de la Concorde to the 
Etoile, there was a scalloped border of 124 sculpted arcades reposing on a double 
row of columns. Tt is a reminiscence,' he Constitutionnel sought to explain, 'of 
Cordova and the Alhambra. ' . . . The visual effect was thus very striking, with the 
swirling branches of the fifty-six great streetlights along the avenue, the reflections 

from the surfaces below, and the flickering of flames from the five hundred thou- 
sand jets of gas." Georges Laronze, he Baron Haussmann, p. 119. D Flaneur Q 


On Haussmann: "Paris now ceased forever to be a conglomeration of small towns, 
each with its distinctive physiognomy and way of life — where one was born and 
where one died, where one never dreamed of leaving home, and where nature and 
history had collaborated to realize variety in unity. The centralization, the mega- 
lomania, created an artificial city, in which the Parisian (and this is the crucial 
point) no longer feels at home; and so, as soon as he can, he leaves. And thus a new 
need arises: the craving for holidays in the country. On the other hand, in the city 
deserted by its inhabitants, the foreigner arrives on a specified date — the start of 
'the season.' The Parisian, in his own town, which has become a cosmopolitan 
crossroads, now seems like one deracinated." Lucien Dubech and Pierre 
d'Espezel, (Histoire de Paris (Paris, 1926),> pp. 427-428. [E3a,6] 

"Most of the time, it was necessary to resort to a jury of expropriations. Its mem- 
bers, cavilers from birth, adversaries on principle, showed themselves generous 
with funds which, as they supposed, cost them nothing and from which each was 
hoping one day to benefit. In a single session where the city might offer a million 
and a half, the jury would demand from it nearly three million. The beautiful field 
of speculation! Who wouldn't want to do his part? There were barristers specializ- 
ing in the matter; there were agencies guaranteeing (in return for a commission) a 
serious profit; there were operations for simulating a lease or a commercial trans- 
action, and for doctoring account books." Georges Laronze, Le Baron Hauss- 
mann (Paris, 1932), pp. 190-191. [E4,l] 

From the Lamentations raised against Haussmann: "You will live to see the city 
grown desolate and bleak. / Your glory will be great in the eyes of future archae- 
ologists, but your last days will be sad and bitter. I ... I And the heart of the city 
will slowly freeze. I ... I Lizards, stray dogs, and rats will rule over this mag- 
nificence. The injuries inflicted by time will accumulate on the gold of the balco- 
nies, and on the painted murals. I .... I And loneliness, the tedious goddess of 
deserts, will come and settle upon this new empire you will have made for her by so 
formidable a labor." Paris desert: Lamentations d'un Jeremie haussmannise 
<(Paris, 1868), pp. 7-8>. [E4,2] 

"The problem of the embellishment — or, more precisely, of the regeneration — of 
Paris arose about 1852. Until then, it had been possible to leave this great city in 
its state of dilapidation, but now it became necessary to deal with the matter. This 
was because, by a fortuitous coincidence, France and the countries around it were 
completing the construction of those long lines of railroad tracks which crisscross 
Europe." Paris nouveau juge par un jlaneur (Paris, 1868), p. 8. [E4,3] 

"I read, in a book which enjoyed great success last year, that the streets of Paris 
had been enlarged to permit ideas to circulate and, above all, regiments to pass. 

This malicious statement (which comes in the wake of others) is the equivalent of 
saying that Paris has been strategically embellished. Well, so be it. ... I do not 
hesitate to proclaim that strategic embellishments are the most admirable of em- 
bellishments." Paris nouveau juge par un flaneur (Paris, 1868), pp. 21-22. 


"They say that the city of Paris has condemned itself to forced labor, in the sense 
that, if it ever ceased its various construction projects and forced its numerous 
workers to return to their respective provinces, from that day forward its toll 
revenues would diminish considerably." Paris nouveau juge par un flaneur 
(Paris, 1868), p. 23. [E4,5] 

Proposal to link the right to vote for the Paris municipal council to proof of at least 
fifteen months' residence in the city. Part of the reasoning: "If you examine the 
matter closely, you will soon realize that it is precisely during the agitated, adven- 
turous, and turbulent period of his existence , . . that a man resides in Paris." 
Paris nouveau juge par un flimeur, p. 33. [E4,6] 

"It is understood that the follies of the city promote reason of state." Jules Ferry, 
Comptes fantastiques d'Haussmann (Paris, 1868), p. 6. [E4,7] 

"The concessions, worth hundreds of millions, are apportioned sub rosa. The 
principle of public adjudication is set aside, as is that of cooperation." Ferry, 
Comptes fantastiques, p. 11. [E4a,l] 

Ferry analyzes (pp. 21-23 of his Comptes fantastiques) the judgments rendered in 
cases of expropriation — judgments which, in the course of Haussmann's projects, 
took on a tendency unfavorable to the city. Following a decree of December 27, 
1858 — which Ferry regards as merely the normalization of an ancient right, but 
which Haussmann regards as the establishment of a new right — the city was de- 
nied the possibility of expropriating in their entirety properties which lay in the 
way of the new arteries. The expropriation was limited to those portions immedi- 
ately required for the construction of the streets. In this way, the city lost out on 
the profits it had hoped to make from the sale of remaining plots of land, whose 
value was driven up by the construction. [E4a,2] 

From Haussmann's memorandum of December 11, 1867: "There is a deep-rooted 
and long-standing conviction that the last two methods of acquisition did not by 
any means automatically terminate the tenants' occupancy. But the Court of Ap- 
peals has ruled, in various decisions spanning the period 1861-1865, that, vis-a- 
vis the city, the judgment requiring the consent of the seller, taken together with 
the private contract, has the effect ipso jure of dissolving the lease of the tenants. 
As a consequence, many of the tenants doing business in houses acquired for 
the city by mutual agreement . . . have acted to annul their leases before the date 
of expropriation and have demanded to be immediately evicted and compen- 

sated. . . . The city . . . has ha d to pay enormous, unforeseen indemnities." Cited 
in Ferry, Comptes fantastiques, p. 24. [E4a,3] 

"Louis-Napoleon Bonaparte felt his vocation to be the securing of the 'bourgeois 
order.' . . . Industry and trade, the affairs of the bourgeoisie, were to prosper. An 
immense number of concessions were given out to the railroads; public subven- 
tions were granted; credit was organized. The wealth and luxury of the bourgeois 
world increased. The 1850s saw the . . . beginnings of the Parisian department 
stores: Au Bon Marche, Au Louvre, La Belle Jardiniere. The turnover at Au Bon 
Marche — which, in 1852, was only 450,000 francs — rose, by 1869, to 21 million." 
Gisela Freund, "Entwicklung der Photographie in Frankreich" [manuscript]. 8 


Around 1830: "The Rue Saint-Denis and Rue Saint-Martin are the principal ar- 
teries in this quartier, a godsend for rioters. The war for the streets was deplorably 
easy there. The rebels had only to rip up the pavement and then pile up various 
objects: furniture from neighboring houses, crates from the grocer's, and, if need 
be, a passing omnibus, which they would stop, gallantly helping the ladies to 
disembark. In order to gain these Thermopylaes, it was thus necessary to demolish 
the houses. The line infantry would advance into the open, heavily armed and well 
equipped. A handful of insurgents behind a barricade could hold an entire regi- 
ment at bay." Dubech and d'Espezel, Histoire de Paris (Paris, 1926), pp. 365-366. 


Under Louis Philippe; "In the interior of the city, the governing idea seems to have 
been to rearrange the strategic lines that played so important a role in the historic 
days of July: the line of the quays, the line of the boulevards. . . . Finally, at the 
center, the Rue de Rambuteau, grandsire of the Haussmannized thoroughfares: it 
presented, at Les Halles, in the Marais, a breadth that seemed considerable 
then — thirteen meters." Dubech and d'Espezel, Histoire de Paris (Paris, 1926), 
pp. 382-383. [E5,l] 

Saint-Simonians: "During the cholera epidemic of 1832, they called for the demo- 
lition of crowded, closely built neighborhoods, which was excellent. But they de- 
manded that Louis Philippe and Lafayette set the pace with shovel and pickaxe; 
the workers were supposed to work under the direction of uniformed Polytechni- 
cians, and to the sound of military music; the most beautiful women in Paris were 
to come and offer their encouragement." Dubech and d'Espezel, Histoire de Paris, 
pp. 392-393. D Industrial Development D Secret Societies D [E5,2] 

"All efforts notwithstanding, the newly constructed buildings did not suffice to 
accommodate the expropriated. The result was a grave crisis in rents: they dou- 
bled. In 1851, the population was 1,053,000; after the annexation in 1866, it 
increased to more than 1,825»000. At the end of the Second Empire, Paris had 
60,000 houses and 612,000 apartments, of which 481,000 were rented f or less than 

500 francs. Buildings grew taller, but ceilings became lower. The government had 
to pass a law requiring a minimum ceiling height of 2 meters 60 centimeters." 
Dubech and d'Espezel, pp. 420-421. [E5,3] 

"Scandalous fortunes were amassed by those in the prefect's inner circle. A legend 
attributes to Madame Haussmann a naive remark in a salon: Tt is curious that 
every time we buy a house, a boulevard passes through it.'" Dubech and 

"At the end of his wide avenues, Haussmann constructs — for the sake of perspec- 
tive — various monuments: a Tribunal of Commerce at the end of the Boulevard 
Sevastopol, and bastard churches in all styles, such as Saint-Augustin (where 
Baltard copies Byzantine structures), a new Saint-Ambroise, and Saint-Francois- 
Xavier. At the end of the Chaussee d'Antin, the Church of La Trinite imitates the 
Renaissance style. Sainte-Clotilde imitates the Gothic style, while Saint- Jean de 
Belleville, Saint-Marcel, Saint-Bernard, and Saint-Eugene are all products of iron 
construction and the hideous embrasures of false Gothic. . . . Though Haussmann 
had some good ideas, he realized them badly. He depended heavily on perspec- 
tives, for example, and took care to put monuments at the end of his rectilinear 
streets. The idea was excellent, but what awkwardness in the execution! The 
Boulevard de Strasbourg frames the enormous flight of steps at the Tribunal of 
Commerce, and the Avenue de l'Opera provides a vista of the porter's lodge at the 
Louvre." Dubech and d'Espezel, pp. 416, 425. [E5,5] 

"Above all, the Paris of the Second Empire is cruelly lacking in beauty. Not one of 
these great straight avenues has the charm of the magnificent curve of the Rue 
Saint-Antoine, and no house of this period affords anything like the tender de- 
lights of an eighteenth-century facade, with its rigorous and graceful orders. Fi- 
nally, this illogical city is structurally weak. Already the architects are saying that 
the Opera is cracked, that La Trinite is crumbling, and that Saint-Augustin is 

"In Haussmann's time, there was a need for new roads, but not necessarily for the 
new roads he built. . . . The most striking feature of his projects is their scorn for 
historical experience. . . . Haussmann lays out an artificial city, like something in 
Canada or the Far West. . . . His thoroughfares rarely possess any utility and 
never any beauty. Most are astonishing architectural intrusions that hegin just 
about anywhere and end up nowhere, while destroying everything in their path; to 
curve them would have been enough to preserve precious old buildings. . . . We 
must not accuse him of too much Haussmannization, but of too little. In spite of 
the megalomania of his theories, his vision was, in practice, not large enough. 
Nowhere did he anticipate the future. His vistas lack amplitude; his streets are too 
narrow. His conception is grandiose but not grand; neither is it just or provident." 

d'Espezel, p. 423. 


britde." Dubech and d'Espezel, p. 427. 


Dubech and d'Espezel, pp. 424-426. 


"If we had to define, in a word, the new spirit that was coming to preside over the 
transformation of Paris, we would have to call it megalomania. The emperor and 
his prefect aim to make Paris the capital not only of France but of the world. . . . 
Cosmopolitan Paris will he the result." Duhech and d'Espezel, p. 404. [E5a,2] 

"Three facts will dominate the project to transform Paris: a strategic fact that 
demands, at the city's center, the break-up of the ancient capital and a new ar- 
rangement of the hub of Paris; a natural fact, the push westward; and a fact 
entailed by the systematic megalomania of the idea of annexing the suburbs." 
Duhech and d'Espezel, p. 406. [E5a,3] 

Jules Ferry, opponent of Haussmann, at the news of the surrender at Sedan: "The 
armies of the emperor are defeated!" Cited in Dubech and d'Espezel, p. 430. 


"Until Haussmann, Paris had been a city of moderate dimensions, where it was 
logical to let experience rule; it developed according to pressures dictated by na- 
ture, according to laws inscribed in the facts of history and in the face of the 
landscape. Brusquely, Haussmann accelerates and crowns the work of revolution- 
ary and imperial centralization. . . . An artificial and inordinate creation, 
emerged like Minerva from the head of Jupiter, born amid the abuse of the spirit of 
authority, this work had need of the spirit of authority in order to develop accord- 
ing to its own logic. No sooner was it born, than it was cut off at the source. . . . 
Here was the paradoxical spectacle of a construction artificial in principle but 
abandoned in fact only to rules imposed by nature." Dubech and d'Espezel, 
pp. 443^44. [E5a,5] 

"Haussmann cut immense gaps right through Paris, and carried out the most 
startling operations. It seemed as if Paris would never endure his surgical experi- 
ments. And yet, today, does it not exist merely as a consequence of his daring and 
courage? His equipment was meager; the shovel, the pick, the wagon, the trowel, 
the wheelbarrow — the simple tools of every race . . . hefore the mechanical age. 
His achievement was truly admirable." Le Corbusier, Urbanisme (Paris <1925>), 
p. 149.' J [E5a,6] 

The mighty seek to secure their position with blood (police), with cunning (fash- 
ion), with magic (pomp). [E5a,7] 

The widening of the streets, it was said, was necessitated by the crinoline. [E5a,8] 

Manner of life among the masons, who often came from Marche or Limousin. (The 
description dates from 1851 — before the great influx of this social stratum in the 
wake of Haussmann's works.) "The masons, whose way of life is more distinct than 
that of other emigrants, belong ordinarily to families of small farmer-householders 
established in the rural townships and provided with individual pasturage, allow- 

Tools used by Haussmaiin's workers. Artist unknown. See E5a,6. 

ing for the maintenance of at least one dairy cow per family. . . . During his so- 
journ in Paris, the mason lives with all the economy that is consistent with an 
unmarried situation; his provisions . . . come to approximately thirty-eight francs 
a month; his lodgings . . . cost only eight francs a month. Workers of the same 
profession ordinarily share a room, where they sleep two by two. This chamber is 
barely heated; it is lit by means of a tallow candle, which the lodgers take turns in 
buying. . . . Having reached the age of forty-five, the mason . . . henceforth re- 
mains on his property to cultivate it liimself. . . . This way of life forms a marked 
contrast to that of the sedentary population; nevertheless, after some years, it 
tends visibly to alter. . . . Thus, during his stay in Paris, the young mason shows 
himself more willing than before to contract illegitimate unions, to spend money on 
clothing, and to frequent various gathering places and places of pleasure. As he 
becomes less capable of elevating himself to the condition of proprietor, he finds 

himself more susceptible to feelings of jealousy toward the upper classes of society. 
This depravity, to which he succumbs far from the influence of his family, . . . and 
in which the love of gain develops without the counterweight of religious sentiment, 
leads sometimes to the sort of coarseness found . . . among the sedentary workers 
of Paris." F. Le Play, Les Ouvriers europeens (Paris, 1855), p. 277. [E6,l] 

On the politics of finance under Napoleon III: "The financial policy of the Empire 
has been consistently guided by two main concerns: to compensate for the in- 
sufficiency of normal revenues and to multiply the construction projects that keep 
capital moving and provide jobs. The trick was to borrow without opening the 
ledger and to undertake a great number of works without immediately overloading 
the budget. . . . Thus, in the space of seventeen years, the imperial government has 
had to procure for itself, in addition to the natural products of taxation, a sum of 
four billion three hundred twenty-two million francs. With the gathering of this 
enormous subsidy, whether by direct loans (on which it was necessary to pay 
interest) or by putting to work available capital (on which revenues were lost), 
there has resulted from these extra-budgetary operations an increase of debts and 
liabilities for the state." Andre Cochut, Operations et tendances financieres du 
Second Empire (Paris, 1868), pp. 13, 20-21. [E6,2] 

Already at the time of the June Insurrection, "they broke through walls so as to be 
able to pass from one house to another." Sigmund Englander, Geschichte der 
franz6sischenArbeiter-Associationen(Hamburg, 1864), vol. 2, p. 287. [E6,3] 

"In 1852, . . . being a Bonapartist opened up all the pleasures in the world. It was 
these people who, humanly speaking, were the most avid for life; therefore, they 
conquered. Zola was agitated and amazed at this thought; suddenly, here was the 
formula for those men who, each in his own way and from his own vantage point, 
had founded an empire. Speculation (chief of the vital functions of this empire), 
unbridled self -enrichment, pleasure seeking — all three were glorified theatrically 
in exhibitions and festivals, which by degrees took on the aspect of a Babylon. And 
along with these brilliant masses taking part in the apotheosis, close behind 
them, . . . the obscure masses who were awaking and moving to the forefront." 
Heinrich Mann, Geist und Tat (Berlin, 1931), p. 167 ("Zola"). [E6a,l] 

Around 1837, Dupin, in the Galerie Colbert, issued a series of colored lithographs 
(signed Pruche <?>, 1837) representing the theatergoing public in various postures. 
A few plates in the series: Spectators in High Spirits, Spectators Applauding, 
Spectators Intriguing, Spectators Accompanying the Orchestra, Attentive Spec- 
tators, Weeping Spectators. [E6a,2] 

Beginnings of city planning in Boissel's Discours contre les servitudes publiques 
<Discourse against Public Easements> of 1786: "Since the natural community of 
goods has been broken up and distributed, every individual property owner has 
built as he pleases. In the past, the social order would not have suffered from this 

trend, but now that urban construction proceeds at the entire discretion, and to 
the entire advantage, of the owners, there is no longer any consideration at all for 
the security, health, or comfort of society. This is particularly the case in Paris, 
where churches and palaces, boulevards and walkways are built in abundance, 
while housing for the great majority of inhabitants is relegated to the shadows. 
Boissel describes in graphic detail the filth and perils that threaten the poor pedes- 
trian on the streets of Paris. . . . To this miserable arrangement of streets he now 
turns his attention, and he effectively solves the problem by proposing to trans- 
form the ground floors of houses into airy arcades, which would offer protection 
from the vehicles and the weather. He thus anticipates Bellamy's idea of 'one 
umbrella over all heads.'" 10 C. Hugo, "Der Sozialismus in Frankreich wahrend 
der grossen Revolution," part 1, "Francois Boissel," Die neue Zeit, 11, no. 1 
(Stuttgart, 1893), p. 813. [E6a,3] 

On Napoleon III around 1851: "He is a socialist with Proudhon, a reformer with 
Girardin, a reactionary with Thiers, a moderate republican with the supporters of 
the republic, and an enemy of democracy and revolution with the legitimists. He 
promises everything and subscribes to everything." Friedrich Szarvady, Paris, 
vol. 1 [the only volume to appear] (Berlin, 1852), p. 401. [E6a,4] 

"Louis Napoleon, . . . this representative of the lumpenproletariat and of every 
type of fraud and knavery, slowly draws ... all power to himself. . . . With glad 
elan, Daumier reemerges. He creates the brilliant figure of Ratapoil, an audacious 
pimp and charlatan. And this ragged marauder, with his murderous cudgel for- 
ever concealed behind his back, becomes for Daumier the embodiment of the 
downfallen Bonapartist idea." Fritz Th. Schulte, "Honore Daumier," Die neue 
Zeit, 32, no. 1 (Stuttgart <1913-1914>), p. 835. [E7,l] 

With reference to the transformation of the city: "Nothing less than a compass is 
required, if you are to find your way." Jacques Fabien, Paris en songe (Paris, 
1863), p. 7. [E7,2] 

The following remark, by way of contrast, throws an interesting light on Paris: 
"Where money, industry, and riches are present, there are facades; the houses 
have assumed faces that serve to indicate the differences in class. In London, more 
than elsewhere, the distances are pitilessly marked. ... A proliferation of ledges, 
bow windows, cornices, columns — so many columns! The column is nobility." 
FernandLeger, "Londres," Lit, 5, no. 23 (June 7, 1935), p. 18. [E7,3] 

The distant native of the age-old Marais 

Rarely sets foot in the Quartier d'Antin, 

And from Menilmontant, calm lookout point, 

He surveys Paris as from a height; 

His thrift and frugality won't let him budge 

From this spot where the gods have dropped him. 

[Leon Gozlan,] Le Triomphe des omnibus: Poeme hero'i-comique (Paris, 1828), 
p. 7. [E7,4] 

"Hundreds of thousands of families, who work in the center of the capital, sleep in 
the outskirts. This movement resembles the tide: in the morning the workers 
stream into Paris, and in the evening the same wave of people flows out. It is a 
melancholy image. ... I would add . . . that it is the lirst time that humanity has 
assisted in a spectacle so dispiriting for the people." A. Granveau, L'Ouvrier 
devant la societe (Paris, 1868), p. 63 ("Les Logements a Paris"). [E7,5] 

July 27, 1830: "Outside the school, men in shirtsleeves were already rolling casks; 
others brought in paving stones and sand by wheelbarrow; a barricade was be- 
gun." G. Pinet, Histoire de VEcole polytechnique (Paris, 1887), p. 142. [E7a,l] 

1833: "The plan to surround Paris with a belt of fortifications . . . aroused pas- 
sionate interest at this time. It was argued that detached forts would be useless for 
the defense of the interior, and threatening only to the population. The opposition 
was universal. . . . Steps were taken to organize a large popular demonstration on 
July 27. Informed of these preparations . . . , the government abandoned the proj- 
ect. . . . Nevertheless, ... on the day of the review, numerous cries of 'Down with 
the forts!' echoed in advance of the procession: i A bas les forts detaches! A bas les 
bastilles!'" G. Pinet, Histoire de VEcole polytechnique (Paris, 1887), pp. 214-215. 
The government ministers took their revenge with the affair of the "Gunpowder 
Conspiracy." 11 [E7a,2] 

Engravings from 1830 show how the insurgents threw all sorts of furniture down 
on the troops from out of the windows. This was a feature especially of the battles 
on the Rue Saint- Antoine. Cabinet des Estampes. [E7a,3] 

Rattier invokes a dream Paris, which he calls "the false Paris" — as distinguished 
from the real one: "the purer Paris, . . . the truer Paris, . . . the Paris that doesn't 
exist" (p. 99): "It is grand, at this moment in time, to set well-guarded Babylon 
walzing in the arms of Memphis, and to set London dancing in the embrace of 
Peking. . . . One of these fine mornings, France will have a rude awakening when it 
realizes it is confined within the walls of Lutetia, of which she forms but a cross- 
roads. . . . The next day, Italy, Spain, Denmark, and Russia will be incorporated 
by decree into the Parisian municipality; three days later, the city gates will be 
pushed back to Novaya Zemlya and to the Land of the Papuans. Paris will be the 
world, and the universe will be Paris. The savannahs and the pampas and the 
Black Forest will compose the public gardens of this greater Lutetia; the Alps, the 
Pyrenees, the Andes, the Himalayas will be the Aventine and the scenic bills of this 
incomparable city — knolls of pleasure, study, or solitude. But all this is still noth- 
ing: Paris will mount to the skies and scale the firmament of firmaments; it will an- 
nex, as suburbs, the planets and the stars." Paul-Ernest de Rattier, Paris n 'existe 

pas (Paris, 1857), pp. 47-49. These early fantasies should he compared with the 
satires on Haussmann published ten years later. [E7a,4] 

% Already Rattier assigns to his false Paris "a unique and simple system of traffic 

tS control that links geometrically, and in parallel lines, all the avenues of this false 

^ Paris to a single center, the Tuileries — this being an admirable method of defense 

| and of maintaining order." Paul-Ernest de Rattier, Paris n'existe pas (Paris, 

« 1857), p. 55. [E8,l] 


"The false Paris has the good taste to recognize that nothing is more useless or 
moreimmoral than a riot. Though it may gain the upper hand for a few minutes, it 
is quelled for several centuries. Instead of occupying itself with politics, ... it is 
peaceably absorbed in questions of economy. ... A prince who is against fraud 
[J ... knows . . . very well . . . that gold, a great deal of gold, is required ... on our 

planet to build a stepladder to the sky." Paul-Ernest de Rattier, Paris n 'existe pas 
(Paris, 1857), pp. 62, 66-67. [E8,2] 

July Revolution: "Fewer were felled ... by bullets than by other projectiles. The 
large squares of granite with which Paris is paved were dragged up to the top fl oors 
of the houses and dropped on the heads of the soldiers. " Friedrich von Raumer, 
Briefe aus Paris und Frankreich im Jahre 1830 (Leipzig <1831>), vol. 2, p. 145. 


Report of a third party, in Raumer's book: "I saw a group of Swiss, who had been 
kneeling and begging for their lives, killed amid jeering, and I saw the stripped 
bodies of the gravely wounded thrown contemptuously onto the barricades to 
make them higher." Friedrich von Raumer, Briefe aus Paris und Frankreich in 
Jahre 1830 (Leipzig, 1831), vol. 2, p. 256. [E8,4] 

Descriptions of barricades of 1830: Ch. Motte, Revolutions tie Paris, 1830: Plan 
figuratif'des barricades ainsi que des positions et mouvements des citoyens armes 
et des trou pes (published by the author <Paris, 1830>). [E8,5] 

Caption for a plate in Les Ruines de Paris: 100 photographies, by A. Liebert 
(Paris, 1871), vol. 1: "Barricade of the Federates, Constructed by Gaillard 
Senior." [E8,6] 

"When the emperor . . . enters his capital, the fifty horses of his carriage are at a 
gallop; between the Gateway of Paris and his Louvre, he pauses under two thou- 
sand triumphal arches and passes before fifty colossi erected in his image. . . . And 
this idolizing of the sovereign by his subjects causes some dismay among the latter- 
day pious, to whom it occurs that their idols were never recipients of such hom- 
age. 1 ' Arsene Houssaye, "Le Paris futur"; in (Dumas, Gautier, Houssaye, and 
others,> Paris et les Parisiens au XIX" siecle (Paris, 1856), p. 469. [E8,7] 

High daily allowances for the deputies under Napoleon TIL 


"The 4,054 barricades of the 'Three Glorious Days' were made from . . . 
8,125,000 paving stones." Le Romantisme [Exhibition catalogue (at the Bih- 
liotheque Nationale), January 22-March 10, 1930; explanatory note to no. 635, 
A. de Grandsagne and M. Plant, Revolution de 1830, plan des combats de Paris], 


"When, last year, thousands of workers marched through the streets of the capital 
in a menacing calm; when, at a time of peace and commercial prosperity, they 
interrupted the course of their work . . . , the government's first responsibility was 
to take forceful measures against a disturbance that was all the more dangerous 
for not knowing itself as such." L. de Carne, "Publications democratiques et 
communistes," Revue des deux mondes, 27 (Paris, 1841), p. 746. [E8a,l] 

"What fate does the present movement of society have in store for architecture? 
Let us look around us. . . . Ever more monuments, ever more palaces. On all sides 
rise up great stone blocks, and everything tends toward the solid, the heavy, the 
vulgar; the genius of art is imprisoned by such an imperative, in which the imagi- 
nation no longer has any room to play, can no longer be great, but rather is 
exhausted in representing . . . the tiered orders on fagades and in decorating 
friezes and the borders of window frames. In the interior, one finds still more of 
the court, more of the peristyle, . . . with the little rooms more and more confined, 
the studies and boudoirs exiled to the niches under the spiral staircase, . . . where 
they constitute pigeonholes for people; it is the cellular system applied to the 
family group. The problem becomes how, in a given space, to make use of the least 
amount of materials and to pack in the greatest number of people (while isolating 
them all from one another). . . . This tendency — indeed, this fait accompli — is the 
result of progressive subdividing. ... In a word, each for himself and each by 
himself has increasingly become the guiding principle of society, while the public 
wealth ... is scattered and squandered. Such are the causes, at this moment in 
France, for the demise of monumentally scaled residential architecture. For pri- 
vate habitations, as they become narrower, are able to sustain but a narrow art. 
The artist, lacking space, is reduced to making statuettes and easel paintings. . . . 
In the presently emerging conditions of society, art is driven into an impasse where 
it suffocates for lack of air. It is already suffering the effects of this new norm of 
limited artistic facility, which certain souls, supposedly advanced, seem to regard 
as the goal of their philanthropy. ... In architecture, we do not make art for art's 
sake; we do not raise monuments for the sole purpose of occupying the imagination 
of architects and furnishing work for painters and sculptors. What is necessary, 
then, is to apply the monumental mode of construction ... to all the elements of 
human dwelling. We must make it possihle not only for a few privileged individuals 
but for all people to live in palaces. And if one is to occupy a palace, one should 
properly live there together with others, in bonds of association .... Where art is 
concerned, therefore, it is only the association of all elements of the community 

that can launch the immense development we are outlining." D. Laverdant, De la 
mission de Vart et du role des artistes: Salon de 1845 (Paris, 1845), from the 
offices of La. Phalange, pp. 13-15. [E8a,2] 

"For some time now, . . . there have heen efforts to discover where this word 
boulevard could have come from. As for me, I am finally satisfied as to the etymol- 
ogy: it is merely a variant of the word bouleversement <commotion, upheavals" 
Edouard Fournier, Chroniques et legendes des rues de Paris (Paris, 1864), p. 16. 


"Monsieur Picard, attorney for the city of Paris, . . . has energetically defended 
the interests of the city. What he has heen presented with in the way of antedated 
leases at the moment of expropriations, what he has had to contend with in order 
to nullify fantastic titles and reduce the claims of the expropriated is almost he- 
yond helief. A collier for the city one day placed before him a lease, antedated 
some years, on paper hearing official stamps. The simple man helieved himself 
already in possession of a weighty sum for his shanty. But he did not know that this 
paper bore, in its watermark, the date of its manufacture. The attorney raised it to 
the light; it had been made three years after the date stamped." Auguste Lepage, 
Les Cafes politiques et litteraires de Paris (Paris <1874>), p. 89. [E9>2] 

Observations on the physiology of the uprising, in Niepovie's book: "Nothing has 
changed on the surface, hut there is something unusual in the air. The cabriolets, 
omnibuses, and hackney coaches seem to have quickened their pace, and the 
drivers keep turning their heads as though someone were after them. There are 
more groups standing around than is usual. . . . People look at one another with 
anxious interrogation in their eyes. Perhaps this urchin or this worker hastening 
by will know something; and he is stopped and questioned. What's going on? ask 
the passersby. And the urchin or the worker responds, with a smile of utter indif- 
ference, 'They are gathering at the Place de la Bastille,' or 'They are gathering 
near the Temple' (or somewhere else), and then hurries off to wherever they are 
gathering. . . . On the sites themselves, the scene is pretty much as he said: the 
population has massed to such an extent that you can hardly get through. The 
pavement is strewn with sheets of paper. What is it? A proclamation of he 
Moniteur republicain, which dates from the Year 50 of the one and indivisible 
French republic. People have gathered, you are told, to discuss the proclamation. 
The shops have not yet been closed; shots have not yet been fired. . . . Now then, 
behold the saviors. . . . All of a sudden, the holy battalion has halted before a 
house, and, just as quicldy, the third-story windows are thrown open and packets 
of cartridges rain down. . . . The distribution is accomplished in the twinkling of 
an eye and, with that, the battalion is dispatched on the run — a portion to one 
side, a portion to the other. . . . Vehicles are no longer passing on the streets; there 
is less noise. And that's why one can hear, if I do not deceive myself . . . Listen, 
they're beating the drum. It is the call to arms. The authorities are roused." 

Gaetan Niepovie, Etudes physiologiques sur les grandes metro poles de I'Europe 
occidental: Paris (Paris, 1840), pp. 201-204, 206. [E9,3] 

A barricade: "At the entrance to a narrow street, an omnibus lies with its four 
wheels in the air. A pile of crates, which had served perhaps to hold oranges, rises 
to the right and to the left, and behind them, between the rims of the wheels and 
the openings, small fires are blazing, continually emitting small blue clouds of 
smoke." Gaetan Niepovie, Etudes physiologiques sur les grandes metropoles de 
I'Europe occidentale: Paris (Paris, 1840), p. 207. [E9a,l] 

1868: death of Meryon. [E9a,2] 

"It has been said that Charlet and Raffet by themselves prepared the way for the 
Second Empire in France." Henri Bouchot, La Lithographie (Paris <1895>), 
pp. 8-9. [E9a,3] 

From Arago's letter on the encirclement of Paris (Associations Nationales en 
Faveur de la Presse Patriote) [extract from he National of July 21, 1833]: "All the 
projected forts, with regard to distance, would give access to the most populous 
districts of the capital" (p. 5). "Two of the forts, those of Italie and Passy, would be 
enough to set fire to all sections of Paris on the Left Bank of the Seine; . . . two 
others, Fort Philippe and Fort Saint-Chaumont, could cover the rest of the city 
with their circle of fire" (p. 8). [E9a,4] 

In Le Figaro of April 27, <1936,> Gaetan Sanvoisin cites this remark by Maxime 
Du Camp: "If there were only Parisians in Paris, there would be no revolutionar- 
ies." Compare with similar statements by Haussmann. [E9a,5] 

"A one-act play by Engels, written in haste and performed in September 1847 at 
the German Alliance for Workers in Brussels, already represented a battle on the 
barricades in a German petty state — a battle which ended with the abdication of 
the prince and the proclamation of a republic." Gustav Mayer, Friedrich Engels, 
vol. 1, Friedrich Engels in seiner Friihzeit, 2nd ed. (Berlin <1933>), p. 269. 12 


During the suppression of the June Insurrection, artillery came to be used for the 
first time in street fighting. [E9a,7] 

Haussmann's attitude toward the Parisian population recalls that of Guizot to- 
ward the proletariat. Guizot characterized the proletariat as the "external popula- 
tion." (See Georgi Plekhanov, "Uber die Anfange der Lehre vom Klassenkampf," 
Die neue £eit, 21, no. 1 (Stuttgart, 1903), p. 285. [E9a,8] 

The building of barricades appears in Fourier as an example of "nonsalaried but 
impassioned work." [E9a,9] 

The practice of bamboozling the municipal expropriations committee became an 
industry under Haussmann. "Small traders and shopkeepers . . . would be sup- 
plied with false books and inventories, and, when necessary, their premises would 
(it turned out) be newly redecorated and refurnished; while during the visit of the 
committee to the premises, a constant stream of unexpected customers would pour 
in." S. Kracauer, Jacques Offenbach und das Paris seiner Zeit (Amsterdam, 
1937), p. 254. 13 [E10.1] 

City planning in Fourier: "Each avenue, each street, should open onto some par- 
ticular prospect, whether the countryside or a public monument. The custom of 
civilized nations — where streets come to an end with a wall, as in fortresses, or 
with a heap of earth, as in the newer sections of Marseilles- — should be avoided. 
Every house that faces the street should be obliged to have ornamentation of the 
first class, in the gardens as well as on the buildings." Charles Fourier, Cites 
ouvrieres: Des modifications a introduire dans V architecture des villes <extracts 
from La Phalange> (Paris, 1849), p. 27. [E10.2] 

In connection with Haussmann: "The mythic structure develops rapidly: opposing 
the vast city is the legendary hero destined to conquer it. In fact, there are hardly 
any works of the period that do not contain some invocation inspired by the 
capital, and the celebrated cry of Rastignac" is of unusual simplicity. . . . The 
heroes of Ponson du Terrail are more lyrical in their inevitable apostrophe to the 
'modern Babylon' (this is always the name used for Paris). See, for example, that 
... of the . . . false Sir Williams in the novel he Club des Valets de coeur: '0 Paris, 
Paris! You are the true Babylon, the true arena of intellectual hattle, the true 
temple where evil has its cult and its priesthood; and I am sure that the breath of 
the archangel of shadows passes over you eternally, like the winds over the infinity 
of the seas. 0 motionless tempest, ocean of stone, I want to be that dark eagle 
which, amid your angry waves, disdains the lightning and sleeps cheerfully on the 
thunderstorm, his great wing extended. I want to be the genius of evil, the vulture 
of the seas, of this most perfidious and tempestuous sea on which the human 
passions toss and unfurl.'" Roger Caillois, "Paris, mythe moderne," Nouvelle 
Revuefrancaise, 25, no. 284 (May 1, 1937), p. 686. [E10.3] 

Blanquist revolt of May 12, 1839: "He had waited a week to profit from the instal- 
lation of new troops unfamiliar with the maze of Paris streets. The thousand men 
on whom he counted for the engagement were supposed to assemble hetween the 
Rue Saint-Denis and the Rue Saint-Martin. . . . Under a magnificent sun ... to- 
ward three in the afternoon, in the midst of a hurgeoning Sunday crowd, the 
revolutionary hand all at once musters and appears. Immediately a vacuum, a 
silence, sets in around them." Gustave Geffroy, L'Enferme (Paris, 1926), vol. 1, 
pp. 81-82. [ElOa.l] 

In 1830, rope was used, among other things, to harricade the streets. 


Rastignac's famous challenge (cited in Messac (he "Detective Novel" et I'influence 
tie la pensee scientifique [Paris, 1929]>, pp. 419—420): "Eugene, now alone, 
walked a few steps to the topmost part of the graveyard. He saw Paris, spread 
windingly along the two banks of the Seine. Lights were beginning to twinkle. His 
gaze fixed itself almost avidly on the space between the column in the Place 
Vendome and the cupola of Les Invalides. There lived the world into which he had 
wished to penetrate. He fastened on the murmurous hive a look that seemed al- 
ready to be sucking the honey from it, and uttered these words: 'Now I'm ready 
for you!'" 15 [E10a,3] 

To the theses of Haussmann corresponds the tahulation of Du Camp, according to 
which the population of Paris during the Commune was 75.5 percent foreigners 
and provincials. [E10a,4] 

For the Blanquist putsch of August 14, 1870, 300 revolvers and 400 heavy dag- 
gers were made available. It is characteristic of the street fighting in this period 
that the workers preferred daggers to revolvers. [E10a,5] 

Kauf mann places attheheadof his chapter entitled "Architectural Autonomy" an 
epigraph from he Contrat social: "a form ... in which each is united with all, yet 
obeys only himself and remains as free as before. — Such is the fundamental prob- 
lem that the social contract solves" (p. 42). 16 In this chapter (p. 43): "[Ledoux] 
justifies the separation of the buildings in the second project for Chaux with the 
words: 'Return to principle. . . . Consult nature; man is everywhere isolated' (Ar- 
chitecture, p. 70). The feudal principle of prerevolutionary society . . . can have 
no further validity now. . . . The autonomously grounded form of every object 
makes all striving after theatrical effect appear senseless. ... At a stroke, it would 
seem, . . . the Baroque art of the prospect disappears from sight." E. Kaufmann, 
Von Ledoux bis he Corbusier (Vienna and Leipzig, 1933), p. 43. [E10a,6] 

"The renunciation of the picturesque has its architectural equivalent in the refusal 
of all prospect-art. A highly significant symptom is the sudden diffusion of the 
silhouette. . . . Steel engraving and wood engraving supplant the mezzotint, which 
had Hourished in the Baroque age. ... To anticipate our conclusions, ... let it be 
said that the autonomous principle retains its efficacy ... in the first decades after 
the architecture of the Revolution, becoming ever weaker with the passage of time 
until, in the later decades of the nineteenth century, it is virtually unrecogniz- 
able." Emil Kaufmann, Von hedoux bis he Corbusier (Vienna and Leipzig, 1933), 
pp. 47, 50. [El 1,1] 

Napoleon Gaillard: builder of the mighty barricade that, in 1871, stood at the 
entrance of the Rue Royale and the Rue de Rivoli. [El 1 ,2] 

"At the corner of the Rue de la Chaussee-d'Antin and the Rue Basse-du-Rampart, 
there sits a house that is remarkable for the caryatids on the facade facing the Rue 

Basse-du-Rampart. Because this latter street must disappear, the magnificent 
house with the caryatids, built only twenty years ago, is going to be demolished. 
The jury for expropriations grants the three million francs demanded by the 
owner and approved by the city. Three million! What a useful and productive 
expenditure!" Auguste Blanqui, Critique sociale, vol. 2, Fragments et notes 
(Paris, 1885), p. 341. [Ell,3] 

"Against Paris. Obdurate scheme to clear out the city, to disperse its population of 
workers. Hypocritically — on a humanitarian pretext — they propose to redistrib- 
ute throughout the 38,000 townships of France the 75,000 workers affected by 
unemployment. 1849." Blanqui, Critique sociale, vol. 2, Fragments et notes 
(Paris, 1885), p. 313. [El 1,4] 

"A Monsieur d'Havrincourt recently expounded on the strategic theory of civil 
war. The troops must never be allowed to spend much time in the main areas of 
disturbance. They are corrupted by contact with the rebels and refuse to fire 
freely when repression becomes necessary. . . . The best system: construct citadels 
dominating the suspect towns and ready at any moment to crush them. Soldiers 
must be kept garrisoned, away from the popular contagion." Auguste Blanqui, 
Critique sociale, vol. 2 (Paris, 1885), pp. 232-233 ("Saint-Etienne, 1850"). 


"The Haussmanization of Paris and the provinces is one of the great plagues of the 
Second Empire. No one will ever know how many thousands of unfortunates have 
lost their lives as a consequence of deprivations occasioned by these senseless 
constructions. The devouring of so many millions is one the principal causes of the 
present distress. . . . 'When building goes well, everything goes well,' runs a popu- 
lar adage, which has attained the status of economic axiom. By this standard, a 
hundred pyramids of Cheops, rising together into the clouds, would attest to 
overflowing prosperity. Singular calculus. Yes, in a well-ordered state, where 
thrift did not strangle exchange, construction would be the true measure of public 
fortune. For then it would reveal a growth in population and an excess of labor 
that . . . would lay a foundation for the future. In any other circumstances, the 
trowel merely betrays the murderous fantasies of absolutism, which, when its fury 
for war momentarily slackens, is seized by the fury for building. . . . All merce- 
nary tongues have been loosed in a chorus of celebration for the great works that 
are renewing the face of Paris. Nothing so sad, so lacking in social spontaneity, as 
this vast shifting of stones by the hand of despotism. There is no more dismal 
symptom of decadence. In proportion as Rome collapsed in agony, its monuments 
grew more numerous and more colossal. It was building its own sepulcher and 
making ready to die gloriously. But as for the modern world — it has no wish to die, 
and human stupidity is nearing its end. People are weary of grandiose homicidal 
acts. The projects that have so disrupted the capital, conditioned as they are on 
repression and vanity, have failed the future no less than the present." A. Blanqui, 

Critique sociale, vol. 1, Capital et travail (Paris, 1885), pp. 109-111 (conclusion 
of "Le Luxe"). The foreword to Capital et travail is dated May 26, 1869. 


"The illusions about the fantastic structures are dispelled. Nowhere are there 
materials other than the hundred simple bodies. ... It is with this meager assort- 
ment that the universe is necessarily made and remade, without respite. M. Hauss- 
mann had just as much to rebuild Paris with; he had precisely these materials. Itis 
not variety that stands out in his constructions. Nature, which also demolishes in 
order to reconstruct, does a little better with the things it creates. It knows how to 
make such good use of its meager resources that one hesitates to say there is a limit 
to the originality of its works." A. Blanqui, L'Eternite par les astres: Hypothese 
astronomique (Paris, 1872), p. 53. [Ella, 2] 

Die neue Weltbiihne, 34, no. 5 (February 3, 1938), in an essay by H. Budzislawski, 
"Croesus Builds" (pp. 129-130), quotes Engels' "Zur Wohnungsfrage" <On the 
Housing Question) of 1872: "In reality the bourgeoisie has only one method of 
settling the housing question after its fashion — that is to say, of settling it in such a 
way that the solution continually poses the question anew. This method is called 
'Haussmann.' By the term 'Haussmann,' I do not mean merely the specifically 
Bonapartist manner of the Parisian Haussmann — cutting long, straight, broad 
streets right through closely built working-class neighborhoods and lining them 
on both sides with big luxurious buildings, the intention having been, apart from 
the strategic aim of making barricade fighting more difficult, to develop a spe- 
cifically Bonapartist building-trades proletariat dependent on the govermnent, 
and to turn the city into a luxury city pure and simple. By 'Haussmann' I mean 
the practice, which has now become general, of making breaches in the working- 
class neighborhoods of our big cities, particularly in those which are centrally 
situated. . . . The result is everywhere the same: the most scandalous alleys . . . 
disappear to the accompaniment of lavish self-glorification by the bourgeoi- 
sie ... , but — they reappear at once somewhere else, often in the immediate 
neighborhood." 17 — With this goes the prize question: Why was the mortality rate 
in London so much higher in the new working-class districts (around 1890?) 
than in the slums? — Because people went hungry so that they could afford the 
high rents. And Peladan's observation: the nineteenth century forced everyone to 
secure lodgings for himself, even at the cost of food and clothing. [E12,l] 

Is it true, as Paul Westheim maintains in his article "Die neue Siegesallee" {Die 
neue Weltbiihne, 34, no. 8, p. 240), that Haussmann spared Parisians the misery of 
large blocks of fiats? [E12,2] 

Haussmann who, faced with the city plan of Paris, takes up Rastignac's cry of "A 
nous deux maintenant!" [E12,3] 

"The new boulevards have introduced light and air into unwholesome districts, 
but have done so by wiping out, along their way, almost all the courtyards and 
gardens — which moreover have been ruled out by the progressive rise in real 
estate prices." Victor Fournel, Paris nouveau et Paris futur (Paris, 1868), p. 224 
("Conclusion"). [E12,4] 

The old Paris bewails the monotony of the new streets; whereupon the new Paris 

Why all these reproaches? , . . 

Thanks to the straight line, the ease of travel it affords, 

One avoids the shock of many a vehicle, 

And, if one's eyes are good, one likewise avoids 

The fools, the borrowers, the bailiffs, the bores; 

Last but not least, down the whole length of the avenue, 

Each passerby now avoids the others, or nods from afar. 

M. Barthelemy, Le Vieux Paris et le nouveau (Paris, 1861), pp. 5-6. [E12a,l] 

The old Paris: "The rent devours all, and they go without meat." M. Barthelemy, 
Le Vieux Paris et le nouveau. (Paris, 1861), p. 8. [E12a,2] 

Victor Fournel, in his Paris nouveau et Paris futur (Paris, 1868), particularly in 
the section "Un chapitre des mines de Paris moderne," gives an idea of the scale 
on which Haussmann engineered destruction in Paris . "Modern Paris is a parvenu 
that goes back no further in time than its own beginnings , and that razes the old 
palaces and old churches to build in their place beautiful white houses with stucco 
ornaments and pasteboard statues. In the previous century, to write the annals of 
the monuments of Paris was to write the annals of Paris itself, from its origins up 
through each of its epochs; soon, however, it will be . . . merely to write the annals 
of the last twenty years of our own existence" (pp. 293-294). [E12a,3] 

Fournel, in his eminent demonstration of Haussmann's misdeeds: "From the Fau- 
bourg Saint-Germain to the Fauhourg Saint-Honore, from the Latin Quarter to 
the environs of the Palais-Royal, from the Faubourg Saint-Denis to the Chaussee 
d'Antin, from the Boulevard des Italiens to the Boulevard du Temple, it seemed, 
in each case, that you were passing from one continent to another. It all made for 
so many distinct small cities within the capital city — a city of study, a city of 
commerce, a city of luxury, a city of refuge, a city of movement and of popular 
pleasures— all of them nonetheless linked to one another by a host of gradations 
and transitions. And this is what is being obliterated ... by the construction 
everywhere of the same geometrical and rectilinear street, with its unvarying mile- 
long perspective and its continuous rows of houses that are always the same 
house.''' Victor Fournel, Paris nouveau et Paris futur, pp. 220-221 ("Con- 
clusion"). [E12a,4] 

"They . . . transplant the Boulevard des Italiens in its entirety to the Montagne 
Sainte-Genevieve — with about as much utility and profit as a hothouse flower in 
the forest — and they create Rues de Rivoli in the ancient city center, which has no 
need of them. Eventually this cradle of the capital, having been demolished, will 
comprise at most a barracks, a church, a hospital, and a palace." Victor Fournel, 
Paris nouveau et Paris futur (Paris, 1868), p. 223. The last thought echoes a 
stanza from Hugo's "A l'Arc. de Triomphe." [E13,l] 

Haussmann's work is accomplished today, as the Spanish war makes clear, by 
quite other means. [E13,2] 

Temporary tenants under Haussmann: "The industrial nomads among the new 
ground-floor Parisians fall into three principal categories: commercial photogra- 
phers; dealers in bric-a-brac, who run bazaars and cheap shops; and exhibitors of 
curiosities, particularly of female giants. Up to now, these interesting personages 
have numbered among those who have profited the most from the transformation 
of Paris." Victor Fournel, Paris nouveau et Parisfutur (Paris, 1868), pp. 129-130 
("Promenade pittoresque a travers le nouveau Paris"). [E13,3] 

"The covered market of Les Halles, by universal consent, constitutes the most 
irreproachable construction of the past dozen years. ... It manifests one of those 
logical harmonies which satisfy the mind by the obviousness of its signification." 
Victor Fournel, Paris nouveau et Parisfutur, p. 213. [E13,4] 

Already Tissot invites speculation: "The city of Paris is supposed to make a series 
of loans totaling hundreds of millions of francs and, at the same time, purchase the 
better part of a quartier in order to rebuild it in a manner conforming to the re- 
quirements of taste, hygiene, and ease of communication. Here is matter 
for speculation." Amedee de Tissot, Paris et Londres compares (Paris, 1830), 

In Le Passe, le present, I'avenir de la Republique (Paris, 1850), p. 31 (cited in 
<Jean> Cassou, Quarante-huit <Paris, 1939>, pp. 174—175), Lamartine already 
speaks of the "nomadic, indecisive, and dissolute city dwellers who are corrupted 
by their idleness in public places and who go whichever way the wind of factional- 

Stahl on the Parisian tenement houses: "It was already [in the Middle Ages] an 
overpopulated metropolis that was squeezed within the tight belt of a walled for- 
tification. For the mass of people, there were neither single-family houses nor 
separately owned houses nor even modest cottages. Buildings of many stories were 
erected on the narrowest of lots, generally allowing only two, often only one, front 
window (though elsewhere three-window houses were the rule). These buildings 
usually remained wholly unadorned, and when they did not simply come to a stop 

pp. 46-47. 


ism blows, heeding the voice of him who shouts the loudest. 


at the top, there was at most a single gable affixed there. . . . On the roofs, the 
situation was strange enough, with unassumijig superstructures and mansardes 
nestled next to the chimney flues, which were placed extremely close to one an- 
other." Stahl sees, in the freedom of the roofing structures — a freedom to which 
modern architects in Paris likewise adhere — "a fantastic and thoroughly Gothic 
element." Fritz Stahl, Paris (Berlin <1929>), pp. 79-80. [E13a,2] 

"Everywhere . . . the peculiar chimneys serve only to heighten the disorder of 
these forms [the mansardes]. This is ... a trait common to all Parisian houses. 
Even the oldest of them have that high wall from which the tops of the chimney 
flues extend. . . . We are far removed here from the Roman style, which has been 
taken to he the foundation of Parisian architecture. We are in fact nearer its 
opposite, the Gothic, to which the chimneys clearly allude. ... If we want to call 
this more loosely a "northern style," then we can see that a second . . . northern 
element is present to mitigate the Roman character of the streets. This is none 
other than the modern boulevards and avenues . . . , which are planted, for the 
most part, with trees; . . . and rows of trees, of course, are a feature of the north- 
ern city." Fritz Stahl, Paris (Berlin), pp. 21-22. [E13a,3] 

In Paris, the modern house has "developed gradually out of the preexisting one. 
This could happen hecause the preexisting one was already a large townhouse of 
the type created here ... in the seventeenth century on the Place Vendome, where 
today the residential palaces of former times have come to harhor business estab- 
lishments of every kind — without having suffered the least alteration to their 
facades." Fritz Stahl, Paris (Berlin), p. 18. [El4] 

A plea for Haussmann: "It is well known that . . . the nineteenth century entirely 
lost, together with other fundamental concepts of art, the concept of the city as . . . 
a unified whole. Henceforth there was no longer any city planning. New huildings 
were introduced into the old network of streets without a plan, and they were 
expanded without a plan. . . . What can properly be called the architectural his- 
tory of a city . . . was in this way everywhere terminated. Paris is the only excep- 
tion, and as such it was greeted with incomprehension and disapproval" 
(pp. 13-14). "Three generations failed to understood what city planning is. We 
know what it is, but in our case this knowledge generally brings only regret for 
missed opportunities. . . . These considerations make it possihle to appreciate the 
only city planner of genius in the modern world — a man, moreover, who indirectly 
created all the American metropolises" (pp. 168-169). "It is solely in this perspec- 
tive, then, that Haussmann's great thoroughfares take on their real meaning. With 
them, the new city . . . intervenes in the old and, in a certain sense, draws on the 
old, without otherwise violating its character. Thus, these thoroughfares may be 
said to have, along with their utility, an aesthetic effect, such that the old city and 
the new are not left standing opposite each other, as is the case everywhere else, 
hut are drawn together into one. The moment you come out of some ancient lane 
onto one of Haussmann's avenues, you're in contact with this newer Paris — the 

Paris of the past three centuries. For Haussmann took over not only the form of 
the avenue and boulevard but also the form of the house from the imperial capital 
laid out by Louis XIV. That is why his streets can perform the function of making 
the city into a conspicuous unity. No, he has not destroyed Paris ; rather, he has 
brought it to completion. . . . This must be acknowledged even when you realize 
how much beauty was sacrificed. . . . Haussmann was assuredly a fanatic — but his 
work could be accomplished only by a fanatic." Fritz Stahl, Paris: Eine Stadt als 
Kunstiverk (Berlin), pp. 173-174. [E14a] 

[Iron Construction] 

Each epoch dreams the one to follow. 

— Michelet, "Avenir! Avenir!" [Europe, 73, p. 6) 

Dialectical deduction of iron construction: it is contrasted both with Greek con- 
struction in stone (raftered ceiling) and with medieval construction in stone 
(vaulted ceiling) . "Another art, in which another static principle establishes a tone 
even more magnificent than that of the other two, will struggle from the womb of 
time to be born. ... A new and unprecedented ceiling system, one that will 
naturally bring in its wake a whole new realm of art forms, can . . . make its 
appearance only after some particular material — formerly neglected, if not un- 
known, as a basic principle in that application — begins to be accepted. Such a 
material is . . . iron, which our century has already started to employ in this 
sense. In proportion as its static properties are tested and made known, iron is 
destined to serve, in the architecture of the future, as the basis for the system of 
ceiling construction; and with respect to statics, it is destined to advance this 
system as far beyond the Hellenic and the medieval as the system of the arch 
advanced the Middle Ages beyond the monolithic stone-lintel system of antiq- 
uity. ... If the static principle of force is thus borrowed from vaulted construc- 
tions and put to work for an entirely new and unprecedented system, then, with 
regard to the art forms of the new system, the formal principle of the Hellenic 
mode must find acceptance." ^um himdertjihrigen Geburtstag Karl Boettichers 
(Berlin, 1906), pp. 42, 44-46. (The principle of Hellenic architecture and Ger- 
manic architecture as carried over into the architecture of our time.) [Fl, 1 ] 

Glass before its time, premature iron. In the arcades, both the most brittle and the 
strongest materials suffered breakage; in a certain sense, they were deflowered. 
Around the middle of the past century, it was not yet known how to build with 
glass and iron. Hence, the light that fell from above, through the panes between 
the iron supports, was dirty and sad. [Fl.2] 

"The mid-1830s see the appearance of the first iron furniture, in the form of 
bedsteads, chairs, small tables, jardinieres; and it is highly characteristic of the 
epoch that this furniture was preferred because it could be made to imitate per- 

fectly any type of wood. Shortly after 1840, fully padded furniture appears in 
France, and with it the upholstered style becomes dominant." Max von Boehn, Die 
Mode im XIX. J ahrhundert, vol. 2 (Munich, 1907), p. 131. [Fl,3] 

The two great advances in technology — gas 1 and cast iron — go together. "Aside 
from the great quantity of lights maintained by the merchants, these galleries are 
illuminated in the evening by thirty-four jets of hydrogen gas mounted on cast- 
iron volutes on the pilasters." The quote is probably referring to the Galerie de 
l'Opera.J. A. Dulaure, Hutoire de Paris . . . depuu 1821 jusqu'a nos jours, vol. 2 
<(Paris, 1835), p. 29>. [Fl,4] 

"The stagecoach gallops up to the quay, by the Seine. A bolt of lightning flashes 
over the Pont d!Austerlitz. The pencil comes to rest." Karl Gutzkow, Brief e aus 
Paris, vol. 2 <Leipzig, 1842>, p. 234. The Austerlitz Bridge was one of the first 
iron structures in Paris. With the lightning flash above, it becomes an emblem of 
the dawning technological age. Close by, the stagecoach with its team of black 
horses, whose hoofs strike romantic sparks. And the pencil of the German author 
who sketches them: a splendid vignette in the style of Grandville. 


"In reality, we know of no beautiful theaters, no beautiful railroad stations, no 
beautiful exhibition halls, no beautiful casinos — that is to say, no beautiful houses 
of industry or of frivolity." Maurice Talmeyr, La Cite du sang (Paris, 1908), 
p. 277. [F1.6] 

Magic of cast iron: "Hahblle 2 was able then to convince himself that the ring 
around this planet was nothing other than a circular balcony on which the inhabi- 
tants of Saturn strolled in the evening to get a breath of fresh air." Grandville, Un 
autre monde (Paris <1844>), p. 139. □ Hashish Q [Fl,7] 

In mentioning factories built in the style of residential houses, and other things of 
this kind, we must take into account the following parallel from the history of 
architecture: "I said earlier that in the period of 'sensibility,' temples were erected 
to friendship and tenderness; as taste subsequently turned to the classical style, a 
host of temples or temple-like buildings immediately sprang up in gardens, in 
parks, on hills. And these were dedicated not only to the Graces or to Apollo and 
the Muses; farm buildings, too, including barns and stables, were built in the 
style of temples." Jacob Falke, Geschichte des modemen Geschmacks (Leipzig, 1866), 
pp. 373-374. There are thus masks of architecture, and in such masquerade the 
architecture of Berlin around 1800 appears on Sundays, like a ghost at a costume 
ball. [Fla,l] 

"Every tradesman imitates the materials and methods of others, and thinks he 
has accomplished a miracle of taste when he brings out porcelain cups resem- 
bling the work of a cooper, glasses resembling porcelains, gold jewelry like leather 

thongs, iron tables with the look of rattan, and so on. Into this arena rushes the 
confectioner as well — quite forgetting his proper domain, and the touchstone of 
his taste — aspiring to be a sculptor and architect." Jacob Falke, Geschichte des 
modernen Geschmacks, p. 380. This perplexity derived in part from the superabun- 
dance of technical processes and new materials that had suddenly become avail- 
able. The effort to assimilate them more thoroughly led to mistakes and failures. 
On the other hand, these vain attempts are the most authentic proof that techno- 
logical production, at the beginning, was in the grip of dreams. (Not architecture 
alone but all technology is, at certain stages, evidence of a collective dream.) 


"With iron construction — a secondary genre, it is true — a new art was horn. The 
east-side railroad station designed by Duquesnay, the Gare de l'Est, was in this 
regard worthy of architects' attention. The use of iron greatly increased in that 
period, thanks to the new combinations to which it lent itself . Two quite different 
but equally remarkable works in this genre deserve to be mentioned first: the 
Bibliotheque Sainte-Genevieve and the cental marketplace, Les Halles. The latter 
is ... a veritable archetype: reproduced several times in Paris and other cities, it 
proceeded, as the Gothic cathedral had done, to appear all over France. . . . Nota- 
hle improvements can be observed in the details. The monumental lead-work has 
become rich and elegant; the railings, candelabras, and mosaic flooring all testify 
to an often successful quest for heauty. Technological advances have made it possi- 
ble to sheathe cast iron with copper, a process which must not he abused. Ad- 
vances in luxury have led, even more successfully, to the replacement of cast iron 
by bronze, something which has turned the streetlamps in certain public places 
into objets d'art." 0 Gas D Note to this passage: "In 1848, 5,763 tons of iron en- 
tered Paris; in 1854, 11,771; in 1862, 41,666; in 1867, 61,572." E. Levasseur, 
Histoire des classes ouvrieres et de Vindustrie en France de 1 789 a 1870, vol. 2 
(Paris, 1904), pp. 531-532. [Fla,3] 

"Henri Labrouste, an artist whose talents are sober and severe, successfully in- 
augurated the ornamental use of iron in the construction of the Bihliotheque 
Sainte-Genevieve and the Bibliotheque Nationale." Levasseur, Histoire des 
classes ouvrieres, p. 197. [Fla,4] 

First construction of Les Halles in 1851, long after the project had been approved 
hy Napoleon in 1811. It met with general disfavor. This stone structure was known 
as lefort de la Halle. "It was an unfortunate attempt which will not be repeated. 
... A mode of construction better suited to the end proposed will now be sought. 
The glassed sections of the Gare de l'Ouest and the memory of the Crystal Palace, 
which had housed the world exhibition at London in 1851, were no doubt respon- 
sible for the idea of using glass and cast iron almost exclusively. Today we can see 
the justification for turning to such lightweight materials, which, better than any 
others, fulfilled the conditions laid down for these establishments. Work on Les 

Halles has not let up since 1851, yet they are still not finished." Maxime Du Camp, 

Plan for a train station intended to replace theGare Saint-Lazare. Corner of Place 
de la Madeleine and Rue Tronchet. "According to the report, the rails — supported 
by 'elegant cast-iron arches rising twenty feet above the ground, and having a 
length of 615 meters' — would have crossed the Rue Saint-Lazare, the Rue Saint- 
Nicolas, the Rue des Mathurins, and the Rue Castellane, each of which would have 
had its own station." D Flaneur. Railroad station near <?> the streets 0 ". . . Merely 
by looking at them, we can see how little these plans actually anticipated the future 
of the railroads. Although described as 'monumental,' the facade of this train 
station (which, fortunately, was never built) is of unusually small dimensions; it 
would not even serve to accommodate one of those shops that nowadays extend 
along the corners of certain intersections. It is a sort of Italianate building, three 
stories high, with each story having eight windows; the main entrance is marked by 
a stairway of twenty-four steps leading to a semicircular porch wide enough for 
five or six persons to pass through side by side." Du Camp, Paris, vol. 1, pp. 238— 

The Gare del'Ouest (today?) presents "the double aspect of a factory in operation 
and a ministry." Du Camp, Paris, vol. 1, p. 241. "With your back to the three 
tunnels that pass under the Boulevard des Batignolles, you can take in the whole of 
the train station. You see that it almost has the shape of an immense mandolin: the 
rails would form the strings, and the signal posts, placed at every crossing of the 
tracks, would form the pegs." Du Camp, Paris, vol. 1, p. 250. [F2,2] 

"Charon . . . ruined by the installation of a wire footbridge over the Styx." Grand- 
ville, Un autre monde (Paris, 1844), p. 138. [F2,3] 

The fi rst act of Offenbach's Vie parisienne takes place in a railroad station. "The 
industrial movement seems to run in the blood of this generation — to such an 
extent that, for example, Flachat has built his house on a plot of land where, on 
either side, trains are always whistling by." Sigf ried Giedion, Bauen in Frankreich 
(Leipzig and Berlin <1928>), p. 13. Eugene Flachat (1802-1873), builder of rail- 
roads, designer. [F2,4] 

On the Galerie d'Orleans in the Palais-Royal (1829-1831): "Even Fontaine, one of 
the originators of the Empire style, is converted in later years to the new material. 
In 1835-1836, moreover, he replaced the wooden flooring of the Galerie des 
Batailles in Versailles with an iron assembly. — These galleries, like those in the 
Palais-Royal, were subsequently perfected in Italy. For us, they are a point of 
departure for new architectural problems: train stations, and the like." Sigf'ried 
Giedion, Bauen in Frankreich, p. 21. [F2,5] 

Paris (Paris, 1875), vol. 2, pp. 121-122. 




"The complicated construction (out of iron and copper) of the Corn Exchange in 
1811 was the work of the architect Bellange and the engineer Brunet. It is the first 
time, to our knowledge, that architect and engineer are no longer united in one 
person. . . . Hittorff, the builder of the Gare du Nord, got his insight into iron 
construction from Bellange. — Naturally, it is a matter more of an application of 
iron than a construction in iron. Techniques of wood construction were simply 
transposed to iron." Sigfried Giedion, Bauen in Frankreich, p. 20. [F2,6] 

Apropos of Veugny's covered market built in 1824 near the Madeleine: "The slen- 
derness of the delicate cast-iron columns brings to mind Pompeian wall paintings. 
'The construction, in iron and cast iron, of the new market near the Madeleine is 
one of the most graceful achievements in this genre. One cannot imagine anything 
more elegant or in better taste. . . .' Eck, Traite." Sigfried Giedion, Bauen in 
Frankreich, p. 21. [F2,7] 

"The most important step toward industrialization: mechanical prefabrication of 
specific forms (sections) out of wrought iron or steel. The fields interpenetrate: . . . 
in 1832, railroad workers began not with building components but with rails. Here 
is the point of departure for sectional iron, which is the basis of iron construction. 
[Note to this passage: The new methods of construction penetrate slowly into 
industry. Double-T iron was used in flooring for the first time in Paris in 1845, 
when the masons were out on strike and the price of wood had risen due to in- 
creased construction and larger spans.]" Giedion, Bauen in Frankreich, p. 26. 


The first structures made of iron served transitory purposes: covered markets, 
railroad stations, exhibitions. Iron is thus immediately allied with functional 
moments in the life of the economy. What was once functional and transitory, 
however, begins today, at an altered tempo, to seem formal and stable. [F2,9] 

"Les Halles consist of two groups of pavilions joined to each other by covered 
lanes. It is a somewhat timid iron structure that avoids the generous spans of 
Horeau and Flachat and obviously keeps to the model of the greenhouse." 
Giedion, Bauen in Frankreich, p. 28. [F2a,l] 

On the Gare du Nord: "Here they have entirely avoided that abundance of space 
which is found in waiting rooms, entryways, and restaurants around 1880, and 
which led to the problem of the railroad station as exaggerated baroque palace. " 
Giedion, Bauen in Frankreich, p. 31. [F2a,2] 

"Wherever the nineteenth century feels itself to be unobserved, it grows bold." 
Giedion, Bauen in Frankreich, p. 33. hi fact, this sentence holds good in the 
general form that it has here: the anonymous art of the illustrations in family 
magazines and children's books, for example, is proof of the point. [F2a,3] 

Railroad stations <Bahnhofe> used to be known as Eisenbahnhqfe? 


There is talk of renewing art by beginning with forms. But are not forms the true 
mystery of nature, which reserves to itself the right to remunerate — precisely 
through them — the accurate, the objective, the logical solution to a problem posed 
in purely objective terms? When the wheel was invented, enabling continuous 
forward motion over the ground, wouldn't someone there have been able to say, 
with a certain justification, "And now, into the bargain, it's round — it's in the form 
of a wheel?" Are not all great conquests in the field of forms ultimately a matter of 
technical discoveries? Only now are we beginning to guess what forms — and 
they will be determinative for our epoch — lie hidden in machines. "To what 
extent the old forms of the instruments of production influenced their new forms 
from the outset is shown, . . . perhaps more strikingly than in any other way, by 
the attempts, before the invention of the present locomotive, to construct a loco- 
motive that actually had two feet, which, after the fashion of a horse, it raised 
alternately from the ground. It is only after considerable development of the 
science of mechanics, and accumulated practical experience, that the form of a 
machine becomes settled entirely in accordance with mechanical principles, and 
emancipated from the traditional form of the tool that gave rise to it." (In this 
sense, for example, the supports and the load, in architecture, are also "forms") 
Passage is from Marx, Kapital, vol. 1 (Hamburg, 1922), p. 347n." [F2a,5] 

Through the Ecole des Beaux-Arts, architecture is linked with the plastic arts. 
"That was a disaster for architecture. In the Baroque age, this unity had been 
perfect and self-evident. In the course of the nineteenth century, however, it 
became untenable." Sigfried Giedion, Bauen in Frankreich <Leipzig and Berlin, 
1928>, p. 16. This not only provides a very important perspective on the Ba- 
roque; it also indicates that architecture was historically the earliest field to out- 
grow the concept of art, or, better, that it tolerated least well being contemplated 
as "art" — a category which the nineteenth century, to a previously unimagined 
extent but with hardly more justification at bottom, imposed on the creations of 
intellectual productivity. [F3,l] 

The dusty fata morgana of the winter garden, the dreary perspective of the train 
station, with the small altar of happiness at the intersection of the tracks — it all 
molders under spurious constructions, glass before its time, premature iron. For 
in the first third of the previous century, no one as yet understood how to build 
with glass and iron. That problem, however, has long since been solved by 
hangars and silos. Now, it is the same with the human material on the inside of 
the arcades as with the materials of their construction. Pimps are the iron up- 
rights of this street, and its glass breakables are the whores. [F3,2] 

"The new 'architecture' <B*uen> has its origin in the moment of industry's forma- 
tion, around 1830 — the moment of mutation from the craf tsmanly to the industrial 
production process." Giedion, Bauen in Frankreich, p. 2. [F3,3] 

"Railroad tracks," with the peculiar and unmistakable dream world that attaches 
to them, are a very impressive example of just how great the natural symbolic 
power of technological innovation can be. In this regard, it is illuminating to learn 
of the bitter polemic waged against iron rails in the 1830s. In A Treatise in 
Elementary Locomotion, for example, A. Gordon argued that the steam carriage {as 
it was called then) should run on lanes of granite. It was deemed impossible to 
produce enough iron for even the very small number of railway lines being 
planned at that time. [F3,4] 

It must be kept in mind that the magnificent urban views opened up by new 
constructions in iron — Giedion, in bis Bauen in Frankreich (illustrations 61-63), 
gives excellent examples with the Pont Transbordeur in Marseilles — for a long 
time were evident only to workers and engineers. Q Marxism □ For in those days 
who besides the engineer and the proletarian had climbed the steps that alone 
made it possible to recognize what was new and decisive about these structures: 
the feeling of space? [F3,5] 

In 1791, the term ingenieur began to be used in France for those officers skilled in 
the arts of fortification and siege. "At the same time, and in the same country, the 
opposition between 'construction' and 'architecture' began to make itself felt; and 
before long it figured in personal attacks. This antithesis had been entirely un- 
known in the past. . . . But in the innumerable aesthetic treatises which after the 
storms of the Revolution guided French art back into regular channels, . . . the 
constructeurs stood opposed to the decorateurs, and with this the further question 
arose: Did not the ingenieurs, as the allies of the former, necessarily occupy with 
them, socially speaking, a distinct camp?" A. G. Meyer, Eisenbauten (Esslingen, 
1907), p. 3. [F3,6] 

"The technique of stone architecture is stereotomy; that of wood is tectonics. What 
does iron construction have in common with the one or the other?" Alfred Gott- 
hold Meyer, Eisenbauten (Esslingen, 1907), p. 5. "In stone we feel the natural 
spirit of the mass. Iron is, for us, only artificially compressed durability and 
tenacity" (p. 9). "Iron has a tensile strength forty times greater than that of stone 
and ten times greater than that of wood, although its net weight is only four times 
that of stone and only eight times that of wood. In comparison with a stone mass of 
the same dimensions, therefore, an iron hody possesses, with only four times the 
weight, a load limit forty times higher" (p. 11). [F3,7] 

"This material, in its first hundred years, has already undergone essential trans- 
formations — cast iron, wrought iron, ingot iron — so that today the engineer has at 
his disposal a huilding material completely different from that of some fifty years 
ago. ... In the perspective of historical reflection, these are 'ferments' of a disqui- 
eting instability. No other huilding material offers anything remotely similar. We 
stand here at the heginning of a development that is sure to proceed at a furious 
pace. . . . The . . . conditions of the material . . . are volatilized in 'limitless 

possibilities.'" A. G. Meyer, Eisenbauten, p. 11. Iron as revolutionary building 
material! [F3a,l] 

Meanwhile, how it looked in the vulgar consciousness is indicated by the crass 
yet typical utterance of a contemporary journalist, according to whom posterity 
will one day have to confess, "In the nineteenth century, ancient Greek architec- 
ture once again blossomed in its classical purity." Europa, 2 (Stuttgart and 
Leipzig, 1837), p. 207. [F3a,2] 

Railroad stations as "abodes of art." "If Wiertz had had at his disposal . . . the 
public monuments of modern civilization — railway stations, legislative chambers, 
university lecture halls, marketplaces, town halls — . . . who can say what bright 
and dramatic new worlds he would have traced upon his canvas!" A. J. Wiertz, 
Oeuvres litteraires (Paris, 1870), pp. 525-526. [F3a,3] 

The technical absolutism that is fundamental to iron construction — and funda- 
mental merely on account of the material itself — becomes apparent to anyone 
who recognizes the extent to which it contrasts with traditional conceptions of 
the value and utility of building materials. "Iron inspired a certain distrust just 
because it was not immmediately furnished by nature, but instead had to be 
artificially prepared as a building material. This distrust is only a specific applica- 
tion of that general sentiment of the Renaissance to which Leon Battista Alberti 
(De re aedificatoria [Paris, 1512], fol. xliv) gives expression at one point with the 
words: 'Nam est quidem cujusquis corporis pars indissolubilior, quae a natura 
concreta et counita est, quam quae hominum manu et arte conjuncta atque, 
compacta est' <For there is, in each thing, a part that is the work and the assem- 
blage of nature, and that is more indissoluble than that which is produced and 
assembled by the hand of man with his art>." A. G. Meyer, Eisenbauten (Esslin- 
gen, 1907), p. 14. [F3a,4] 

It is worth considering — and it appears that the answer to this question would be 
in the negative — whether, at an earlier period, technical necessities in architecture 
(but also in the other arts) determined the forms, the style, as thoroughly as they 
do today, when such technological derivation seems actually to become the 
signature of everything now produced. With iron as a material, this is already 
clearly the case, and perhaps for the first time. Indeed, the "basic forms in which 
iron appears as a building material are . . . already themselves, as distinct synthe- 
ses, partly new. And their distinctiveness, in large measure, is the product and 
expression of the natural properties of the building material, since such properties 
have been technically and scientifically developed and exploited precisely for 
these forms. The systematic industrial process which converts raw material into 
immediately available building material begins, with iron, at a much earlier stage 
than with previously existing building materials. Between matter and material, in 
this case, there is a relationship quite different from that between stone and 
ashlar, clay and tile, timber and beam: with iron, building material and structural 

form are, as it were, more homogeneous." A. G. Meyer, Eisenbauten (Esslingen, 
1907), p. 23. [F3a,5] 

1840-1844: "The construction of fortifications, inspired by Thiers. . . . Thiers, 
who thought that railroads would never work, had gates constructed in Paris at 
the very moment when railroad stations were needed." Dubech and d'Espezel, 
Histoire de Paris (Paris, 1926), p. 386. [F3a,6] 

"From the fifteenth century onward, this nearly colorless glass, in the form of 
window panes, rules over the house as well. The whole development of interior 
space obeys the command: 'More light!' 5 — In seventeenth-century Holland, this 
development leads to window openings that, even in houses of the middle class, 
ordinarily take up almost half the wall. . . . / The abundance of light occasioned 
by this practice must have . . . soon become disagreeable. Within the room, 
curtains offered a relief that was quickly to become, through the overzealous art 
of the upholsterer, a disaster. . . . / The development of space by means of glass 
and iron had come to a standstill. / Suddenly, however, it gained new strength 
from a perfectly inconspicuous source. / Once again, this source was a 'house,' 
one designed to 'shelter the needy,' but it was a house neither for mortals nor for 
divinities, neither for hearth fires nor for inanimate goods; it was, rather, a house 
for plants. / The origin of all present-day architecture in iron and glass is the 
greenhouse." A. G. Meyer, Eisenbauten, p. 55. D Light in the Arcades D Mirrors □ 
The arcade is the hallmark of the world Proust depicts. Curious that, like this 
world, it should be bound in its origin to the existence of plants. [F4,l] 

On the Crystal Palace of 1851: "Of all the great things about this work, the great- 
est, in every sense of the word, is the vaulted central hall. . . . Now, here too, at 
first, it was not a space-articulating architect who did the talking but a — gar- 
dener. . . . This is literally true: the main reason for the elevation of the central 
hall was the presence, in this section of Hyde Park, of magnificent elm trees, which 
neither the Londoners nor Paxton himself wished to see felled. Incorporating them 
into his giant glass house, as he had done earlier with the exotic plants at 
Chatsworth, Paxton almost unconsciously — but nonetheless fundamentally — en- 
hanced the architectural value of his construction." A. G. Meyer, Eisenbauten 
(Esslingen, 1907), p. 62. [F4,2] 

In opposition to the engineers and builders, <Charles-Francois> Viel, as architect, 
publishes his extremely violent, comprehensive polemic against static calculation, 
under the title De I Impuissance des mathematiques pour assurer la solidite des 
bdtiments <On the Uselessness of Mathematics for Assuring the Stability of Build- 
ings) (Paris, 1805). [F4,3] 

The following holds good for the arcades, particularly as iron structures: "Their 
most essential component ... is the roof. Even the etymology of the word 'hall"' 
points to this. It is a covered, not an enclosed space; the side walls are, so to 

Interior of the Crystal Palace, London, from a photograph by William Henry Fox Talbot. See 

speak, 'concealed.'" This last point pertains in a special sense to the arcades, 
whose walls have only secondarily the function of partitioning the hall; primarily, 
they serve as walls or facades for the commercial spaces within them. The pas- 
sage is from A. G. Meyer, Eisenbauten, p. 69. [F4,4] 

The arcade as iron construction stands on the verge of horizontal extension. 
That is a decisive condition for its "old-fashioned" appearance. It displays, in this 
regard, a hybrid character, analogous in certain respects to that of the Baroque 
church — "the vaulted 'hall* that comprehends the chapels only as an extension of 
its own proper space, which is wider than ever before. Nevertheless, an attraction 
'from on high' is also at work in this Baroque hall — an upward-tending ecstasy, 
such as jubilates from the frescoes on the ceiling. So long as ecclesiastical spaces 
aim to be more than spaces for gathering, so long as they strive to safeguard the 
idea of the eternal, they will be satisfied with nothing less than an overarching 
unity, in which the vertical tendency outweighs the horizontal." A. G. Meyer, 
Eisenbauten, p. 74. On the other hand, it may be said that something sacral, a 
vestige of the nave, still attaches to this row of commodities that is the arcade. 
From a functional point of view, the arcade already occupies the field of horizon- 
tal amplitude; architecturally, however, it still stands within the conceptual field of 
the old "hall." ' [F4,5] 

The Galerie des Machines, built in 1889, 7 was torn down in 1910 "out of artistic 
sadism." [F4,6] 

Historical extension of the horizontal: "From the palaces of the Italian High Ren- 
aissance, the chateaux of the French kings take the 'gallery,' wliich — as in the case 
of the 'Gallery of Apollo' at the Louvre and the 'Gallery of Mirrors' at Versailles — 
becomes the emblem of majesty itself. . . . / Its new triumphal advance in the nine- 
teenth century begins under the sign of the purely utilitarian structure, with those 
halls known as warehouses and markets, workshops and factories; the problem of 
railroad stations and, above all, of exhibitions leads it back to art. And every- 
where the demand for continuous horizontal extension is so great that the stone 
arch and the wooden ceiling can have only very limited applications. ... In Gothic 
structures, the walls turn into the ceiling, whereas in iron halls of the type . . . 
represented by the Gallery of Machines in Paris, the ceiling slides over the walls 
without interruption." A. G. Meyer, Eisenbauten, pp. 74—75. [F4a,l] 

Never before was the criterion of the "minimal" so important. And that includes 
the minimal element of quantity: the "little," the "few." These are dimensions 
that were well established in technological and architectural constructions long 
before literature made bold to adapt them. Fundamentally, it is a question of 
the earliest manifestation of the principle of montage. On building the Eiffel 
Tower: "Thus, the plastic shaping power abdicates here in favor of a colossal 
span of spiritual energy, which channels the inorganic material energy into the 
smallest, most efficient forms and conjoins these forms in the most effective 

maimer. . . . Each of the twelve thousand metal fittings, each of the two and a half 
million rivets, is machined to the millimeter. . . . On this work site, one hears no 
chisel-blow liberating form from stone; here thought reigns over muscle power, 
which it transmits via cranes and secure scaffolding." A. G. Meyer, Eisenbauten, 
p. 93. 0 Precursors D [F4a,2] 

"Haussmann was incapable of having what could be called a policy on railroad 
stations. . . . Despite a directive from the emperor, who justly baptized les gares 
'the new gateways of Paris,' the continued development of the railroads surprised 
everyone, surpassing all expectations. . . . The habit of a certain empiricism was 
not easily overcome." Dubech and d'Espezel, Histoire de Paris (Paris, 1926), 
p. 419. [F4a,3] 

Eiffel Tower. "Greeted at first by a storm of protest, it has remained quite ugly, 
though it proved useful for research on wireless telegraphy. ... It has been said 
that this world exhibition marked the triumph of iron construction. It would he 
truer to say that it marked its bankruptcy." Dubech and d'Espezel, Histoire de 
Paris, pp. 461-462. [F4a,4] 

"Around 1878, it was thought that salvation lay in iron construction. Its 'yearning 
for verticality' (as Salomon Reinach put it), the predominance of empty spaces 
over filled spaces, and the lightness of its visible frame raised hopes that a style was 
emerging in which the essence of the Gothic genius would be revived and rejuve- 
nated by a new spirit and new materials. But when engineers erected the Galerie 
des Machines and the Eiffel Tower in 1889, people despaired of the art of iron. 
Perhaps too soon." Dubech and d'Espezel, Histoire de Paris, p. 464. [F4a,5] 

Beranger: "His sole reproach to the regime of Louis Philippe was that it put the 
republic to grow in a hothouse." Franz Diederich, "Victor Hugo," Die neue Zeit, 
20, no. 1 (Stuttgart, 1901), p. 648. [F4a,6] 

"The path that leads from the Empire form of the first locomotive to the fin- 
ished objective and functional form of today marks an evolution." Joseph Aug. 
Lux, "Maschinenasthetik," Die neue Zeit, 27, no. 2 (Stuttgart, 1909), p. 439. 


''Those endowed with an especially fine artistic conscience have hurled down, 
from the altar of art, curse after curse on the building engineers. It suffices to 
mention Ruskin." A. G. Meyer, Eisenbauten (Esslingen, 1907), p. 3. [F5,l] 

Concerning the artistic idea of Empire. On Daumier: "He displayed the greatest 
enthusiasm for muscular excitations. Tirelessly his pencil exalts the tension and 
movement of muscles. . . . But the public of which he dreamed was proportioned 
differently from this ignoble . . . society of shopkeepers. He yearned for a social 
milieu that would have provided, like that of ancient Greece, a hase from which 

people could raise themselves, as from a pedestal, in vigorous beauty. ... A gro- 
tesque distortion must . . . result when the bourgeoisie is viewed from the angle of 
such ideals. Daumier's caricatures were thus the almost involuntary consequence 
of a lofty ambition that failed in its aim of attunement with the middle-class pub- 
lic. ... In 1835, an attempt on the life of the king" presented an . . . opportunity to 
curtail . . . the boldness of the press, which had been publicly blamed for the deed. 
Political caricature became impossible. . . . Hence, the drawings of lawyers done 
in this period are ... by far the most passionate and animated. The courtroom is 
the only place where pitched battles can still be waged in all their fury, and lawyers 
are the only people in whom an emphatically muscular rhetoric and a profession- 
ally dramatic pose have made for an elaborate physiognomy of the body." Fritz 
Th. Schulte, "Honore Daumier," Die neue Zeit, 32, no. 1 (Stuttgart <1913>), 
pp. 833-835. [F5,2] 

The miscarriage of Baltard's design for Les Halles, built in 1853, is due to the 
same unfortunate combination of masonry and ironwork as in the original proj- 
ect for the London exhibition hall of 1851, the work of the Frenchman Horeau. 
Parisians referred to Baltard's structure, which was subsequently torn down, as le 
fort de la Halle. [F5,3] 

On the Crystal Palace, with the elms in its midst: "Under these glass arches, 
thanks to awnings, ventilators, and gushing fountains, visitors revel in a delicious 
coolness. In the words of one observer: 'You might think you were under the 
billows of some fabulous river, in the crystal palace of a fairy or naiad.'" A. Demy, 
Essai historique <sur les expositions universelles de Paris (Paris, 1907)>, p. 40. 


"After the closing of the London Exhibition in 1851, people in England won- 
dered what was to become of the Crystal Palace. Although a clause inserted in 
the deed of concession for the grounds required . . . the demolition ... of the 
building, public opinion was unanimous in asking for the abrogation of this 
clause. . . . The newspapers were full of proposals of all kinds, many of which 
were distinctly eccentric. A doctor wanted to turn the place into a hospital; 
another suggested a bathing establishment. . . . One person had the idea of mak- 
ing it a gigantic library. An Englishman with a violent passion for flowers insisted 
on seeing the whole palace become a garden." The Crystal Palace was acquired 
by Francis Fuller and transferred to Sydenham. A. S. de Doncourt, Les Expositions 
universelles (Lille and Paris <1889>), p. 77. Compare F6a,l. The Bourse could 
represent anything; the Crystal Palace could be used for anything. [F5a,l] 

"Furniture making in tubular iron . . . rivals furniture making in wood, and even 
surpasses it. Furniture of such iron, with baked-on color, . . . enameled with flow- 
ers or with patterns imitating those of inlaid wood, is elegant and nicely turned, 

like the tops of Boucher's gates." Edouard Foucaud, Paris inventeur: Physiologie 
de Vindustriefranqaise (Paris, 1844), pp. 92-93. [F5a,2] 

The square opposite the Gare du Nord was known in 1860 as the Place de 
Roubaix. [F5a,3] 

In engravings of the period, horses are prancing across railroad station espla- 
nades, and stagecoaches roll by in clouds of dust. [F5a,4] 

Caption for a woodcut representing a catafalque in the Gare du Nord: "Last 
respects paid to Meyerbeer in Paris at the gare de chemin defer du Nord." 


Factories with galleries inside and winding iron staircases. Early prospectuses and 
illustrations show production rooms and display rooms, which are often under the 
same roof, fondly represented in cross-section like doll houses. Thus a prospectus 
of 1865 for the footwear company Pinet. Not infrequently one sees ateliers, like 
those of photographers, with sliding shades in front of the skylight. Cabinet des 
Estampes. [F5a,6] 

The Eiffel Tower: "It is characteristic of this most famous construction of the 
epoch that, for all its gigantic stature, ... it nevertheless feels like a knickknack, 
which . . . speaks for the fact that the second-rate artistic sensibility of the era 
could think, in general, only within the framework of genre and the technique of 
filigree." Egon Friedell, Kulturgeschichte der Neuzeit, vol. 3 (Munich, 1931), 
p. 363. [F5a,7] 

"Michel Chevalier sets down his dreams of the new temple in a poem: 
I would have you see my temple, the Lord God said. 

The eolumns of the temple 

Were strong beams; 
Of hollow cast-iron columns 
Was the organ of this new temple. 

The framework was of iron, of molded steel, 

Of copper and of bronze. 
The architect had placed it upon the columns 
Like a stringed instrument upon a woodwind. 

From the temple came, moreover, at each moment of the day, 
The sounds of a new harmony. 
The slender spire rose up like a lightning rod; 
It reached to the clouds, 

La Casse-tete-omanie, ou La Fureur du jour (Picture Puzzle Mania, or They're All the Rage These 
Days). See F6,2. 

To seek there electrie force; 
Storms have charged it with vitality and tension. 

At the top of the minarets 
The telegraph was waving its arms, 
Bringing from all parts 
Good news to the people." 

Henry-Rene D'Allemagne, Les Saint-Simoniens, 1827-1837 (Paris, 1930), p. 308. 


Hie "Chinese puzzle," which comes into fashion during the Empire, reveals the 
century's awakening sense for construction. The problems that appear, in the 
puzzles of die period, as hatched portions of a landscape, a building, or a figure 
are a first presentiment of the cubist principle in the plastic arts. (To verify: 
whether, in an allegorical representation in the Cabinet des Estampes, the brain- 
teaser undoes the kaleidoscope or vice versa.) [F6,2] 

"Paris a vol d'oiseau" <A Bird's-Eye View of Paris) — Notre-Dame de Pans, vol. 1, 
book 3 — concludes its overview of the architectural histoiy of the city with an 
ironic characterization of the present day, which culminates in a description of the 
architectural insignificance of the Stock Exchange. The importance of the chap- 
ter is underlined by a note added to the definitive edition of 1832, which says: 
"The author . . . enlarges, in one of these chapters, upon the current decadence of 
architecture and the now (in his view) almost inevitable demise of this king of the 

arts — a view which is, unhappily, deeply rooted in him and deeply pondered." 
Victor Hugo, Oeuvres completes, novels, vol. 3 (Paris, 1880), p. 5." [F6,3] 

Before the decision to build the Palais de 1'Industrie 10 was made, a plan had 
existed to roof over a section of the Champs-Elysees — along with its trees — in the ^ 
manner of the Crystal Palace. [F6,4] | 

Victor Hugo, in JSotre-Dame de Paris, on the Bourse: "If it he the rule that the g 
architecture of a building should he adapted to its function, ... we can hardly 
wonder enough at a monument which might equally well be a king's palace, a house 
of commons, a town hall, a college, a riding school, an academy, a warehouse, a 
law court, a museum, a barracks, a sepulcher, a temple, or a theater. For the 
present, it is a stock exchange. ... It is a stock exchange in France just as it would 
have been a temple in Greece. . . . We have the colonnade encircling the monu- 
ment, beneath which, on days of high religious solemnity, the theory of stockbro- 
kers and jobbers can be majestically expounded. These, for sure, are very stately 
monuments. If we add to them many fine streets, as amusing and diverse as the 
Rue de Rivoli, then I do not despair but that one day a balloon's-eye view of Paris 
will offer us that wealth of lines, . . . that diversity of aspect, that somehow . . . 
unexpected beauty, which characterizes a checkerboard." Victor Hugo, Oeuvres 
completes, novels, vol. 3 (Paris, 1880), pp. 206-207 (JSotre-Dame de Paris). 11 


The Paris Stock Exchange, mid-nineteenth century. Courtesy of the Paris Stock Exchange. 

The Palais de l'lndustrie at the world exhibition of 1855. See F6a,2. 

Palais de l'lndustrie: "One is struck by the elegance and lightness of the iron 
framework; yet the engineer, . . . Monsieur Barrault, has shown more skill than 
taste. As for the domed glass roof, ... it is awkwardly placed, and the idea evoked 
. . . is . . . that of a large cloche: industry in a hothouse. . . . On each side of the 
entrance have been placed two superb locomotives with their tenders." This last 
arrangement presumably occasioned by the distribution of prizes which closed the 
exhibition on November 15, 1855. Louis Enault, "Le Palais de l'lndustrie," in 
Paris et les Parisiens auXIX" siecle (Paris, 1856), pp. 313, 315. [F6a,2] 

From Charles-Franyois Viel, De Vlmpuissance des mathematiques pour assurer la 
solidite des batiments (Paris, 1805): Viel distinguishes ordonnance <planning, lay- 
out) from construction and faults the younger architects above all for insufficient 
knowledge of the former. Ultimately responsible is "the new direction that public 
instruction in this art has taken, in the wake of our political tempests" (p. 9). "As 
for the geometers who practice architecture, their buildings — as regards invention 
and construction — prove the nullity of mathematics where ordonnance and struc- 
tural stability are concerned" (p. 10). "The mathematicians . . . claim to have . . . 
reconciled boldness with stability. It is only under the aegis of algebra that these 

two words can meet" (p. 25; it remains to be determined whether this last sentence 
is meant ironically, or whether it distinguishes between algebra and mathematics). 
The author criticizes the Pont du Louvre and the Pont de la Cite (both bridges 
from 1803) in accordance with the principles of Leon Battista Alberti. [F6a,3] 

According to Viel, the first bridges to be built on a constructive basis would have 
been undertaken around 1730. [F7,l] 

In 1855, the Hotel du Louvre was constructed at a rapid tempo, so as to be in place 
for the opening of the world exhibition. "For the first time, the entrepreneurs used 
electric light on the site, in order to double the day's labor; some unexpected 
delays occurred; the city was just coming out of the famous carpenters' strike, 
which put an end to wood-frame structures in Paris. Consequently, the Hotel du 
Louvre possesses the rare distinction of having wedded, in its design, the wood 
paneling of old houses to the iron flooring of modern buildings." V"' G. d'Avenel, 
"Le Mecanisme de la vie moderne," part 1, "Les Grands Magasins," Revue des 
deux mondes (July 15, 1894), p. 340. [F7,2] 

"In the beginning, railroad cars look like stagecoaches, autobuses like omnibuses, 
electric lights like gas chandeliers, and the last like petroleum lamps." Leon 
Pierre-Quint, "Signification du cinema," L'Art cinematographique, 2 (Paris, 
1927), p. 7. [F7.3] 

Apropos of the Empire style of Schinkel: "The building that brings out the lo- 
cation, the substructure that embodies the true seat of invention, . . . these 
things resemble — a vehicle. They convey architectural ideals, which only in this 
sort of way can still be 'practiced.'" Carl Linfert, "Vom Ursprung grosser 
Baugedanken," Frankfurter Zeitung, January 9, 1936. [F7,4] 

On the world exhibition of 1889: "We can say of this festivity that it has been 
celebrated, ahove all, to the glory of iron. . . . Having undertaken to give readers 
of Le Correspondant a rough idea of industry in connection with the Exposition du 
Champ de Mars, we have chosen for our theme 'Metal Structures and Railroads.'" 
Albert de Lapparent, Le Siecle dufer (Paris, 1890), pp. vii-viii. [F7,5] 

On the Crystal Palace: "The arcliitect, Paxton, and the contractors, Messrs. Fox 
and Henderson, had systematically resolved not to use parts with large dimen- 
sions. The heaviest were hollow cast-iron girders, eight meters long, none of which 
weighed more than a ton. . . . Their chief merit was that they were economical. . . . 
Moreover, the execution of the plan was remarkahly rapid, since all the parts were 
of a sort that the factories could undertake to deliver quickly. " Albert de Lappar- 
ent, Le Siecle dufer (Paris, 1890), ]>. 59. [F7,6] 

Lapparent divides iron structures into two classes: iron structures with stone 
facings and true iron structures. He places the following example among the fi rst 

sort. "Labrouste . . . , in 1868, . . . gave to the puhlic the reading room of the 
Bibliotheque Nationale. ... It is difficult to imagine anything more satisfying or 
more harmonious than this great chamher of 1,156 square meters, with its nine 
fretted cupolas, incorporating arches of iron lattice and resting on sixteen light 
cast-iron columns, twelve of which are set against the walls, while four, completely 
free-standing, rise from the floor on pedestals of the same metal." Alhert de Lap- 
parent, Le Siecle dufer (Paris, 1890), pp. 56-57. [F7a,l] 

The engineer Alexis Barrault, who with Viel built the Palace of Industry in 1855, 
was a brother of Emile Barrault. [F7a,2] 

In 1779, the first cast-iron bridge (that of Coalbrookdale). In 1788, its builder 12 
was awarded the Gold Medal of the English Society of Arts. "Since it was in 1790, 
furthermore, that the architect Louis completed the wrought-iron framework for 
the Theatre Frangais in Paris, we may say that the centenary of metal construction 
coincides almost exactly with that of the French Revolution." A. de Lapparent, Le 

On the suhject of the Chinese puzzle, a lithograph: The Triumph of the Kaleido- 
scope, or the Demise »f the Chinese Game. A reclining Chinese man with a hrain- 
teaser spread out on the ground before him. On his shoulder, a female figure has 
planted her foot. In one hand, she carries a kaleidoscope; in the other, a paper or 
a scroll with kaleidoscope patterns. Cahinet des Estampes (dated 1818). [F7a,5] 

"The head turns and the heart tightens when, for the first time, we visit those fairy 
halls where polished iron and dazzling copper seem to move and think by them- 
selves, while pale and feeble man is only the humble servant of those steel giants." 
J. Michelet, Le Peuple (Paris, 1846), p. 82. The author in no way fears that me- 
chanical production will gain the upper hand over human heings. The individual- 
ism of the consumer seems to him to speak against this: each "man now . . . wants 
to be himself. Consequently, he will often care less for products fahricated by 
classes, without any individuality that speaks to his own" (ihid. , p. 78). 13 [F7a,6] 

"Viollet-le-Duc (1814-1879) shows that the architects of the Middle Ages were also 
engineers and resourceful inventors." Amedee Ozenfant, "La Peinture murale," 
Encyclopedia francaise, vol. 16, Arts et litteratu res dans la societe contempo- 
raine, part 1 , p. 70, column 3. [F8,l] 

Protest against the Eiffel Tower: "We come, as writers, painters, sculptors, archi- 
tects, ... in the name of French art and French history, hoth of which are threat- 
ened, ... to protest against the construction, in the very heart of our capital, of 
the useless and monstrous Eiffel Tower. ... Its harharous mass overwhelms 
Notre-Dame, the Sainte-Chapelle, the Tower of Saint- Jacques. All our monuments 

Siecle dufer (Paris, 1890), pp. 11-12. 


Paris, in 1822: a "woodwork strike. 


Le Triomphe du kaleidoscope, ou Le Tombeau du jeu chinois (The 
Triumph of die Kaleidoscope, or The Demise of the Chinese 
Game), 1818. Courtesy of the Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris. 
See F7a,5. 

are debased , our architecture diminished." Cited in Louis Cheronnet, "Les Trois 
Grand-meres de Imposition," Vendredi, April 30, 1937. [F8,2] 

Supposedly there were trees within Musard's "Harmony Hall," on the Boulevard 
Montmartre. [F8,3] 

"It was in 1783, in the construction of the Theatre Francais, that iron was em- 
ployed for the first time on a large scale, by the architect Louis. Never perhaps, 
has a work so audacious been attempted. When, in 1900, the theater was rehuiltin 
the aftermath of a fi re, it was with a weight of iron one hundred times greater than 
that which the architect Louis had used for the same trusswork. Construction in 
iron has provided a succession of buildings, of which the great reading room of the 
Bihliotheque Nationale hy Lahrouste was the first, and one of the most success- 
ful. . . . But iron requires costly maintenance. . . . The world exhibition of 1889 

marked the triumph of exposed ironwork . . . ; at the exhibition of 1900, nearly all 
the iron frames were covered with plasterwork." L' Encyclopedic francaise, vol. 
16, 16-68, pp. 6-7 (Auguste Perret, "Les Besoins collectifs et l'architecture"). 

The "triumph of exposed ironwork" in the age of the genre: "It may be . . . the . . . 
enthusiasm for machine technology and the faith in the superior durability of its 
materials that explains why the attribute 'iron' is used . . . whenever . . . power 
and necessity are supposed to be manifest. Iron are the laws of nature, and iron is 
the 'stride of the worker battalion 1 ; the . . . union of the German empire is suppos- 
edly made of iron, and so is . . . the chancellor himself." Dolf Sternberger, Pano- 

The iron balcony. "In its most rigorous form, the house has a uniform facade. . . . 
Articulation results only from doors and windows. In France, the window is, 
without exception, even in the poorest house, a porte-fenetre, a 'French window' 
opening to the floor. . . . This makes a railing necessary; in the poorer houses it is 
a plain iron bar, hut in the wealthier houses it is of wrought iron. ... At a certain 
stage, the railing becomes an ornament. ... It further contributes to the articula- 
tion of the facade by . . . accenting the lower line of the window. And it fulfills both 
functions without hreaking the plane of the facade. For the great architectural 
mass of the modern house, with its insistent lateral extension, this articulation 
could not possibly suffice. The architects' building-sense demanded that the ever 
stronger horizontal tendency of the house ... be given expression. . . . And they 
discovered the means for this in the traditional iron grille. Across the entire length 
of the building front, on one or two stories, they set a balcony provided with an 
iron grating of this type, which, being black, stands out very distinctly and makes 
a vigorous impression. These balconies, ... up to the most recent period of build- 
ing, were kept very narrow; and if through them the severity of the surface is 
overcome, what can be called the relief of the facade remains nonetheless quite 
flat, overcoming the effect of the wall as little as does the sculpted ornamentation, 
likewise kept flat. In the case of adjoining houses , these balcony railings fuse with 
one another and consolidate the impression of a walled street; and this effect is 
heightened by the fact that, wherever the upper stories are used for commercial 
purposes, the proprietors put up . . . not signboards but matched gilded letters in 
roman style, which, when well spaced across the ironwork, appeal - purely decora- 


rama (Hamburg, 1938), p. 31. 


live." Fritz Stahl, Paris (Berlin <1929>), pp. 18-19. 


[Exhibitions, Advertising, Grandville] 

Yes, when all the world from Paris to China 

Pays heed to your doctrine, O divine Saint-Simon, 

The glorious Golden Age will be reborn. 

Rivers will flow with chocolate and tea, 

Sheep roasted whole will frisk on the plain, 

And sauteed pike will swim in the Seine. 

Fricasseed spinach will grow on the ground, 

Garnished with crushed fried croutons; 

The trees will bring forth apple compotes, 

And fanners will harvest boots and coats. 

It will snow wine, it will rain chickens, 

And ducks cooked with turnips will fall from the sky. 

— Ferdinand Langle and Emile Vanderburch, Louis-Bronze et k Saint- 
Simonien: Parodie de Louis XI (Theatre du Palais-Royal, February 27, 
1832), cited in Theodore Muret, L'Hhtoire par k theitre, 1789-1851 
(Paris, 1865), vol. 3, p. 191 

Music such as one gets to hear on the pianofortes of Saturn's 

— Hector Berlioz, A travers chants, authorized German edition pre- 
pared by Richard Pobl (Leipzig, 1864), p. 104 ("Beethoven im Ring 
des Satxim") 

From a European perspective, things looked this way : In all areas of production, 
from the Middle Ages until the beginning of the nineteenth century, the develop- 
ment of technology proceeded at a much slower rate than the development of art. 
Art could take its time in variously assimilating the technological modes of 
operation. But the transformation of things that set in around 1800 dictated the 
tempo to art, and the more breathtaking this tempo became, the more readily the 
dominion of fashion overspread all fields. Finally, we arrive at the present state of 
things: the possibility now arises that art will no longer lind time to adapt some- 
how to technological processes. The advertisement is the ruse by which the 
dream forces itself on industry. [Gl,l] 

Within the frames of the pictures that hung on dining room walls, the advent of 
whiskey advertisements, of Van Houten cocoa, of Amieux canned food is her- 

aided. Naturally, one can say that the bourgeois comfort of the dining room has 
survived longest in small cafes and other such places; but perhaps one can also 
say that the space of the cafe, within which every square meter and every hour 
are paid for more punctually than in apartment houses, evolved out of the latter. 
The apartment from which a cafe was made is a picture puzzle < Vexierbild> with 
the caption: Where is the capital hiding? [Gl ,2] 

Grandville's works are the sibylline books oipublicite. Everything that, with him, 
has its preliminary form as joke, or satire, attains its true unfolding as adver- 
tisement. [Gl,3] 

Handbill of a Parisian textiles dealer from the 1830s: "Ladies and Gentlemen: / I 
ask you to cast an indulgent eye on the following observations; my desire to con- 
tribute to your eternal salvation impels me to address you. Allow me to direct your 
attention to the study of the Holy Scriptures, as well as to the extremely moderate 
prices which I have been the first to introduce into the field of hosiery, cotton 
goods, and related products. No. 13, Rue Pave-Saint-Sauveur." Eduard Kroloff, 
Schilderungen aus Paris (Hamburg, 1839), vol. 2, pp. 50-51. [Gl,4] 

Superposition and advertising: "In the Palais-Royal, not long ago, between the 
columns on the upper story, I happened to see a life-sized oil painting repre- 
senting, in very lively colors, a French generalin full-dress uniform. I take out my 
spectacles to examine more closely the historical subject of the picture, and my 
general is sitting in an armchair holding out a bare foot: the podiatrist, kneeling 
before him, excises the corns." J. F. Reichardt, Vertraute Briefe aus Paris (Ham- 
burg, 1805), vol. 1, p. 178. [Gl,5] 

In 1861, the first lithographic poster suddenly appeared on walls here and there 
around London. It showed the back of a woman in white who was thickly 
wrapped in a shawl and who, in all haste, had just reached the top of a flight of 
stairs, where, her head half turned and a finger upon her lips, she is ever so 
slightly opening a heavy door, through which one glimpses the starry sky. In this 
way Wilkie Collins advertised his latest book, one of the greatest detective novels 
ever written: The Woman in White. See Talmeyr, La Cite' du sang (Paris, 1901), 
pp. 263-264. [Gl,6] 

It is significant that Jugendstil failed in interior design, and soon afterward in 
architecture too, whereas in the street, with the poster, it often found very suc- 
cessful solutions. This is fully confirmed in Behne's discerning critique: "By no 
means was Jugendstil ridiculous in its original intentions. It was looking for 
renewal because it clearly recognized the peculiar contradictions arising between 
imitation Renaissance art and new methods of production determined by the 
machine. But it gradually became ridiculous because it believed that it could 
resolve the enormous objective tensions formally, on paper, in the studio." D In- 
terior D Adolf Behne, Neues Wthnen — Neues Bauen (Leipzig, 1927), p. 15. Of 

course, in the end, the law according to which an action brings about an opposite 
reaction holds true for Jugendstil. The genuine liberation from an epoch, that is, 
has the structure of awakening in this respect as well: it is entirely ruled by 
cunning. Only with cunning, not without it, can we work free of the realm of 
dream. But there is also a false liberation; its sign is violence. From the beginning, 
it condemnedjugendstil to failure. D Dream Structure D [Gl , 7] 

Innermost, decisive significance of the advertisement: "Good posters exist . . . 
only in the domain of trifles, of industry, or of revolution." Maurice Talmeyr, La 
Cite du sang (Paris, 1901), p. 277. The same thought with which the bourgeois 
here detects the tendency of advertising in its early period: "In short, the moral of 
the poster has nothing to do with its art, and its art nothing to do with the moral, 
and this defines the character of the poster" (ibid., p. 275). [Gl,8] 

Just as certain modes of presentation — genre scenes and the like — begin, in the 
course of the nineteenth century, to "cross over" into advertising, so also into the 
realm of the obscene. The Nazarene style and the Makart style have their black 
and their colored lithographic cousins in the field of obscene graphics. I saw a 
plate that, at first glance, could have passed as something like Siegfried's bath in 
dragon blood: green sylvan solitude, crimson mantle of the hero, naked flesh, a 
sheet of water — it was the most complicated embrace of three human bodies, and 
it looked like the frontispiece of an inexpensive book for young people. This is 
the language of color characteristic of the posters that flourished in the arcades. 
When we hear that portraits of famous cancan dancers like Rigolette and 
Frichette would have hung there, we have to imagine them colored like this. 
Falser colors are possible in the arcades; that combs are red and green surprises 
no one. Snow White's stepmother had such things, and when the comb did not 
do its work, the beautiful apple was there to help out — half red, half poison- 
green, like cheap combs. Everywhere gloves play a starring role, colored ones, 
but above all the long black variety on which so many, following Y/ette Guilbert, 
have placed their hopes for happiness, and which will bring some, let us hope, to 
Margo Lion. And laid out on a side table in a tavern, stockings make for an 
ethereal meat counter. [Gla.l] 

The writings of the Surrealists treat words like trade names, and their texts are, at 
bottom, a form of prospectus for enterprises not yet off the ground. Nesting 
today in trade names are figments such as those earlier thought to be hidden in 
the cache of "poetic" vocables. [Gla,2] 

In 1867, a wallpaper dealer put up his posters on the columns of bridges. [Gla,3] 

Manyyears ago, on the streetcar, I saw a posterthat, if things had their due in this 
world, would have found its admirers, historians, exegetes, and copyists just as 
surely as any great poem or painting. And, in fact, it was both at the same time. 

As is sometimes the case with very deep, unexpected impressions, however, the 
shock was too violent: the impression, if I may say so, struck with such force that 
it broke through the bottom of my consciousness and for years lay irrecoverable 
somewhere in the darkness. I knew only that it had to do with "Bullrich Salt" and 
that the original warehouse for this seasoning was a small cellar on Flottwell 
Street, where for years I had circumvented the temptation to get out at this point 
and inquire about the poster. There I traveled on a colorless Sunday afternoon in 
that northern Moabit, a part of town that had already once appeared to me as 
though built by ghostly hands for just this time of day. That was when, four years 
ago, I had come to Liitzow Street to pay customs duty, according to the weight of 
its enameled blocks of houses, on a china porcelain city which I had had sent 
from Rome. There were omens then along the way to signal the approach of a 
momentous afternoon. And, in fact, it ended with the story of the discovery of an 
arcade, a story that is too berlinisch to be told just now in this Parisian space of 
remembrance. Prior to this incident, however, I stood with my two beautiful 
companions in front of a miserable cafe, whose window display was enlivened by 
an arrangement of signboards. On one of these was the legend "Bullrich Salt." It 
contained nothing else besides the words; but around these written characters 
there was suddenly and effortlessly configured that desert landscape of the 
poster. I had it once more. Here is what it looked like. In the foreground, a 
horse-drawn wagon was advancing across the desert. It was loaded with sacks 
bearing the words "Bullrich Salt." One of these sacks had a hole, from which salt 
had already trickled a good distance on the ground. In the background of the 
desert landscape, two posts held a large sign with the words "Is the Best." But 
what about the trace of salt down the desert trail? It formed letters, and these 
letters formed a word, the word "Bullrich Salt." Was not the preestablished 
harmony of a Leibniz mere child's play compared to this tightly orchestrated 
predestination in the desert? And didn't that poster furnish an image for things 
that no one in this mortal life has yet experienced? An image of the everyday in 
Utopia? [Gla,4] 

"The store known as La Chaussee d!Antin had recently announced its new 
inventory of yard goods. Over two million meters of barege, over five million of 
grenadine and poplin, and over diree million of other fabrics — altogether about 
eleven million meters of textiles. Le Tintamarre now remarked, after recommend- 
ing La Chaussee d'Antin to its female readers as the 'foremost house of fashion in 
the world,' and also the 'most dependable': 'The entire French railway system 
comprises barely ten thousand kilometers of tracks — that is, only ten million 
meters. This one store, therefore, with its stock of textiles, could virtually stretch a 
tent over all the railroad tracks of France, "which, especially in the heat of 
summer, would be very pleasant.'" Three or four other establishments of diis 
kind publish similar figures, so that, with all these materials combined, one could 
place not only Paris . . . but the whole departement of the Seine under a massive 
canopy, 'which likewise would be welcome in rainy weather.' But we cam rot help 
asking: How are stores supposed to fi nd room to stock diis gigantic quantity of 

goods? The answer is very simple and, what is more, very logical: each firm is 
always larger than the others. 

"You hear it said: 'La Ville de Paris, the largest store in the capital,' 'Les Villes 
de France, the largest store in the Empire,' 'La Chaussee d'Antin, the largest store 
in Europe,' 'Le Coin de Rue, the largest store in the world.' — 'In the world': that 
is to say, on the entire earth there is none larger; you'd think that would be the 
limit. But no: Les Magasins du Louvre have not been named, and they bear the 
title 'The largest stores in the universe.' The universe! Including Sirius appar- 
ently, and maybe even the 'disappearing twin stars' of which Alexander von 
Humboldt speaks in bis Kosmos." 1 

Here we see the connection between capitalism's evolving commercial adver- 
tising and the work of Grandville. 

< Adolf Ebeling,> Lebende Bilder aus dem modernen Paris, 4 vols. (Cologne, 1863- 
1866), vol. 2, pp. 292-294. [G2,l] 

"Now then, you princes and sovereign states, resolve to pool your riches, your 
resources, your energies in order to ignite, as we do our gas jets, long-extinct 
volcanoes [whose craters, though filled with snow, are spewing torrents of inflam- 
mable hydrogen] ; high cylindrical towers would be necessary to conduct the hot 
springs of Europe into the air, from which — so long as care is taken to avoid any 
premature contact with cooling waters — they will tumble down in cascades [and 
thereby warm the atmosphere]. Artificial concave minors, arranged in a semi- 
circle on mountaintops to refl ect the rays of the sun, would suitably augment the 
tendency of these springs to heat the air." E v. Brandenburg, Victoria! Eine neae 
Welt! Frendevoller Ausnifin Being daraitf, ditfi anf tmserm Planeten, besonders anf der 
von urn bewohnten nbrdlichen Halbkugel eine Male Temperatar-Verdnderimg hinsicht- 
lich der Vermehrung der atmospharischen Warme eingetreten ist,' 2 2nd expanded ed. 
(Berlin, 1835) <pp. 4-5>. D Gas D 

This fanatasy of an insane mind effectively constitutes, under the influence of 
the new invention, an advertisement for gas lighting — an advertisement in the 
comic-cosmic style of Grandville. In general, the close connection between adver- 
tising and the cosmic awaits analysis. [G2,2] 

Exhibitions. "All regions and indeed, retrospectively, all times. From farming and 
mining, from industry and from the machines that were displayed in operation, 
to raw materials and processed materials, to art and the applied arts. In all these 
we see a peculiar demand for premature synthesis, of a kind that is characteristic 
of the nineteenth century in other areas as well: think of the total work of art. 
Apart from indubitably utilitarian motives, the century wanted to generate a 
vision of the human cosmos, as launched in a new movement." Sigf ried Giedion, 
Bauen in Frankreich (Leipzig and Berlin, 1928>, p. 37. But these "premature syn- 
theses" also bespeak a persistent endeavor to close up the space of existence and 
of development. To prevent the "airing-out of the classes." [G2,3] 

Apropos of the exhihition of 1867, organized according to statistical principles: 
"To take a turn ahout this place, circular like the equator, is literally to travel 

around the world, for all nations have come here; enemies are coexisting in peace. 
Just as, at the origin of things, the divine spirit was hovering over the orb of the 
waters, so now it hovers over this orb of iron." ^Exposition universelle de 1867 
illustree: Publication internationale autorisee par la commission imperiale, vol. 
2, p. 322 (cited in Giedion, <Banen in Frankreich,> p. 41). [G2,4] 

In connection with the exhibition of 1867. On Offenbach. "For the past ten years, 
this verve of the comic author and this joyous inspiration of the composer have 
been vying with each other for fantastic and serendipitous effects; but only in 
1867, the year of the Universal Exposition, did they attain the height of hilarity, 
the ultimate expression of their exuberance. 3 The success of this theater company, 
already so great, became delirious — something of which our petty victories of 
today can furnish no idea. Paris, that summer, suffered sunstroke." From the 
speech before the Academie Francaise by Henri Lavedan, December 31, 1899 (on 
the election of Meilhac). [G2a,l] 

Advertising is emancipated in Jugendstil. Jugendstil posters are "large, always 
figurative, refined in their colors but not gaudy; they show balls, night clubs, 
movie theaters. They are made for a frothy life — a life with which the sensual 
curves of Jugendstil are well matched." Frankfurter ^eitmg, signed F. L. On an 
exhibition of posters in Mannheim in 1927. D Dream Consciousness D [G2a,2] 

The first London exhibition brings together industries from around the world. 
Following this, the South Kensington museum is founded. Second world exhibition 
in 1862, likewise in London. With the Munich exhibition of 1875, the German 
Renaissance style comes into fashion. [G2a,3] 

Wiertz on the occasion of a world exhibition: "What strikes one at first is not at all 
the things people are making today but the things they will be making in the future. 
/ The human spirit begins to accustom itself to the power of matter." A. J. Wiertz, 
Oeuvres litteraires (Paris, 1870), p. 374. [G2a,4] 

Talmeyr calls the poster "the art of Gomorrah." La Cite du sang (Paris, 1901), 
p. 286. D Jugendstil D [G2a,5] 

Industrial exhibitions as secret blueprint for museums. Art: industrial products 
projected into the past. [G2a,6] 

Joseph Nash painted a series of watercolors for the king of England showing the 
Crystal Palace, the edifice built expressly for London's industrial exhibition in 
1851. The first world exhibition and the first monumental structure in glass and 
ironl From these watercolors, one sees with amazement how the exhibitors took 
pains to decorate the colossal interior in an oriental-fairy-tale style, and how — 
alongside the assortment of goods that filled the arcaded walks — bronze monu- 

ments, marble statues, and bubbling fountains populated the giant halls. D Iron 
□ Interior D [G2a,7] 

The design for the Crystal Palace is by Joseph Paxton, chief gardener to the duke 
of Devonshire, for whom he had built a conservatory (greenhouse) of glass and 
iron at Chatsworth House. His design provided for fir eproofing, plenty of light, 
and the possibility of speedy and inexpensive assembly, and it prevailed over 
those of the London Building Committee, whose competition was held in vain. 4 


"Yes, long live the beer of Vienna! Is it native to this land that produces it? In 
truth, I do not know. But of one thing, there can be no doubt: it is a refined and 
comforting brew. It is not like the beer of Strasbourg ... or Bavaria. ... It is 
divine beer, . . . clear as the thought of a poet, light as a swallow in flight, robust 
and alcohol-charged as the pen of a German philosopher. It is digested like the 
purest water, and it refreshes like ambrosia." Advertisement for Fanta Beer of 
Vienna. No. 4, Rue Halevy, near the Nouvel Opera, New Year's 1866. Almanack 
indicateur parisien (Paris, 1866), p. 13. [G2a,9] 

"Another new word: la reclame (advertisement). Will it make a fortune?" Nadav, 
Quand j'etais photographe (Paris <1900>), p. 309. [G2a,l#] 

Between the February Revolution and the June Insurrection: "All the walls were 
covered with revolutionary posters which, some years later, Alfred Delvau re- 
printed in two thick volumes under the title Les Murailles revolutionnaires, so 
that today we can still get some idea of this remarkable poster literature. There 
was scarcely a palace or a church on which these notices could not be seen. Never 
before was such a multitude of placards on view in any city. Even the government 
made use of this medium to publish its decrees and proclamations, while thou- 
sands of other people resorted to affiches in order to air their views publicly on all 
possible questions. As the time for the opening of the National Assembly drew 
near, the language of the posters grew wilder and more passionate. . . . The num- 
ber of public criers increased every day; thousands and thousands of Parisians, 
who had nothing else to do, became news vendors." Sigmund Englander, 
Geschichte der franzdsischen Arbeiter-Associationen (Hamburg, 1864), vol. 2, 
pp. 279-280. [G3,l] 

"A short merry piece that is customarily presented here before the performance of 
a new play: Harlequin afficheur <Harlequin the Bill-Sticker >. In one quite funny 
and charming scene, a poster for the comedy is stuck on Columbine's house." J. F. 
Reichardt, Vertraute Briefe aus Paris (Hamburg, 1805), vol. 1, p. 457. [G3,2] 

"These days, a good many houses in Paris appear to be decorated in the style of 
Harlequin's costume; I mean a patchwork of large green, yellow, [a word illegible] 
and pink pieces of paper. The bill-stickers wrangle over the walls and come to 

blows over a streetcorner. The best of it is that all these posters cover one another 
up at least ten times a day." Eduard Kroloff , Schilderungen aus Paris (Hamburg, 
1839), vol. 2, p. 57. [G3,3] 

"Paul Siraudin, born in 1814., has been active in the theater since 1835; he has 
supplemented this activity with practical efforts in the field of confectionery. The 
results of these efforts beckon no less temptingly from the large display window in 
the Rue de la Paix than the sugar almonds, bonbons, honey cakes, and sweet 
crackers offered to the public in the form of one-act dramatic sketches at the 
Palais-Royal." Rudolf Gottschall, "Das Theater und Drama des Second Empire," 
in Unsere Zeit: Deutsche Revue — Monatsschrift zum Conversationslexicon 
(Leipzig, 1867), p. 933. [G3,4] 

From Coppee's speech to the Academie Francaise ("Response to Heredia," May 
30, 1895), it can be inferred that a strange sort of written image could formerly be 
seen in Paris: "Calligraphic masterpieces which, in the old days, were exhibited on 
every streetcorner, and in which we could admire the portrait of Beranger or 'The 
Taking of the Bastille' in the form of paraphs" <p. 46>. [G3 ,5] 

Le Charivari of 1836 has an illustration showing a poster that covers half a 
housefront. The windows are left uncovered, except for one, it seems. Out of 
that a man is leaning while cutting away the obstructing piece of paper. 


"Essence d'Amazilly, fragrance and antiseptic, hygienic toiletries from Duprat 
and Company." "If we have named our essence after the daughter of a cacique, it 
is only to indicate that the vegetal ingredients to which this distillation owes its 
surprising effectiveness come from the same torrid climate as she does. The term 
'antiseptic' belongs to the lexicon of science, and we use it only to point out that, 
apart from the incomparable benefits our product offers to ladies, it possesses 
hygienic virtues calculated to win the confidence of all those willing to be convinced 
of its salutary action. For if our lotion, unlike the waters of the Fountain of Youth , 
has no power to wash away the accumulated years, at least it does have, in addi- 
tion to other merits, the inestimable advantage (we believe) of restoring to the full 
extent of its former radiance the lost majesty of that consummate entity, that 
masterpiece of Creation which, with the elegance, purity, and grace of its forms, 
makes up the lovelier half of humanity. Without the providential supervention of 
our discovery, this most brilliant and delicate ornament — resembling, in the ten- 
der charms of its mysterious structure, a fragile blossom that wilts at the first hard 
rain — would enjoy, at best, but a fugitive splendor, after the fading of which it 
must needs languish under the ruinous cloud of illness, the fatiguing demands of 
nursing, or the no less injurious embrace of the pitiless corset. Developed, above 
all, in the interests of ladies, our Essence d'Amazilly answers to the most exacting 
and most intimate requirements of their toilette. It unites, thanks to a happy 
infusion, all that is necessary to revive, foster, and enhance natural attractions, 

without the slightest detriment." (Cited in> Charles Simond, Paris de 1800 a 1900 
(Paris, 1900), vol. 2, p. 510 ("Une Reclame de parfumeur en 1857")/' [G3a,l] 

"Gravely, the sandwich-man bears his double burden, light as it is. A young lady 
whose rotundity is only temporary smiles at the walking poster, yet wishes to read 
it even as she smiles. The happy author of her abdominal salience likewise bears a 
burden of his own." <The husband has his wife on his right arm and a large box 
under his left. Along with four other people, they are clustered around a sand- 
wich-man seen from the haclo Text accompanying a lithograph entitled 
"L'Homme-affiche sur la Place des Victoires," from Nouveaux Tableaux de Paris, 
text to plate 63 [the lithographs are by Marie t]. This hook is a sort of Hogaith ad 
usum Delphini. [G3a,2] 

Beginning of Alfred Delvau's preface to Les Murailles revolutionnaires: "These 
revolutionary placards — at the bottom of which we set our obscure name — form 
an immense and unique composition, one without precedent, we believe, in the 
history of books. They are a collective work. The author is Monsieur Everyone — 
Mein Herr Omnes, as Luther says." Les Murailles revolutionnaires de 1848, 16th 
ed. (Paris <1852>), vol. 1, p. 1 . [G3a,3] 

"When, in 1798, under the Directory, the idea of puhlic exhibitions was inaugu- 
rated on the Champ de Mars, there were 110 exhibitors, of whom twenty-five were 
awarded medals." Palais de I'Industrie (distributed hy H. Plon). [G4,l] 

"Beginning in 1801, the products of newly emerging industries were exhibited in 
the courtyard of the Louvre." Lucien Dubech and Pierre d'Espezel, Histoire de 
Paris (Paris, 1926), p. 335. [G4,2] 

"Every fi ve years — in 1834, 1839, and 1844 — the products of industry are exhib- 
ited in Marigny Square." Duhech and d'Espezel, Histoire de Paris, p. 389. 


"The first exhibition dates back to 1798; set up on the Champ de Mars, it was . . . 
an exhihition of the products of French industry and was conceived by Francois de 
Neufchateau. There were three national exhibitions under the Empire (in 1801, 
1802, and 1806), the first two in the courtyard of the Louvre, the third at the 
Invalides. There were three during the Restoration (in 1819, 1823, and 1827), all 
at the Louvre; three during the July Monarchy (in 1834 , 1839, and 1844), on the 
Place de la Concorde and the Champs-Elysees; and one under the Second Repuh- 
lic, in 1849. Then, following the example of England, which had organized an 
international exhibition in 1851, Imperial France held world exhibitions on the 
Champ de Mars in 1855 and 1867. The fi rst saw the birth of the Palais de I'Indus- 
trie, demolished during the Republic; the second was a delirious festival marking 
the high point of the Second Empire. In 1878, a new exhihition was organized to 
attest to rehirth after defeat; it was held on the Champ de Mars in a temporary 

palace erected by Formige. It is characteristic of these enormous fairs to be 
ephemeral, yet each of them has left its trace in Paris. The exhibition of 1878 was 
responsible for the Trocadero, that eccentric palace clapped down on the top of 
Chaillot by Davioud and Boivrdais, and also for the footbridge at Passy, built to 
replace the Pont d'lena, which was no longer usable. The exhibition of 1889 left 
behind the Galerie des Machines, which was eventually torn down, although the 
Eiffel Tower still stands." Dubech and d'Espezel, Histoire de Paris (Paris, 1926), 
p. 461. [G4,4] 

'"Europe is off to view the merchandise,' said Renan — contemptuously — of the 
1855 exhibition." Paul Morand, 1900 (Paris, 1931), p. 71. [G4,5] 

'"This year has been lost for propaganda,' says a socialist orator at the congress of 
1900." Paul Morand, 1900 (Paris, 1931), p. 129. [G4,6] 

"In 1798, a universal exposition of industry was announced; it was to take place 
... on the Champ de Mars. The Directory had charged the minister of the interior, 
Francois de Neuf chateau, with organizing a national festival to commemorate the 
founding of the Republic. The minister had conferred with several people, who 
proposed holding contests and games, like greasy-pole climbing. One person sug- 
gested that a great market be set up after the fashion of country fairs, but on a 
larger scale. Finally, it was proposed that an exhibition of paintings be included. 
These last two suggestions gave Francois de Neuf chateau the idea of presenting an 
exhibition of industry in celebration of the national festival. Thus, the first indus- 
trial exposition is born from the wish to amuse the working classes , and it becomes 
for them a festival of emancipation. . . . The increasingly popular character of 
industry starts to become evident. . . . Silk fabrics are replaced by woolens, and 
satin and lace by materials more in keeping with the domestic requirements of the 
Third Estate: woolen bonnets and corduroys. . . . Chaptal, the spokesman for this 
exhibition, calls the industrial state by its name for the first time." Sigmund 
Englander, Geschichte der franzosischen Arbeiter-Associationen (Hamburg, 
1864), vol. 1, pp. 51-53. [G4.7] 

"In celebrating the centenary of the great Revolution, the French bourgeoisie has, 
as it were, intentionally set out to demonstrate to the proletariat ad oculos the 
economic possibility and necessity of a social uprising. The world exhibition has 
given the proletariat an excellent idea of the unprecedented level of development 
which the means of production have reached in all civilized lands — a development 
far exceeding the boldest Utopian fantasies of the century preceding this one. . . . 
The exhibition has further demonstrated that modern development of the forces of 
production must of necessity lead to industrial crises that, given the anarchy cur- 
rently reigning in production, will only grow more acute with the passage of time, 
and hence more destructive to the course of the world economy." G. Plekhanov, 
"Wie die Bourgeoisie ihrer Revolution gedenkt," Die neue Zeit, 9, no. 1 (Stuttgart, 
1891), p. 138. [G4a,l] 

"Despite all the posturing with which Teutonic arrogance tries to represent the 
capital of the Reich as the brightest beacon of civilization, Berlin has not yet been 
able to mount a world exhibition. ... To try to excuse this deplorable fact by 
claiming that world exhibitions have had their day and now are nothing but gaudy 
and grandiose vanity fairs, and so forth, is a crass evasion. We have no wish to 
deny the drawbacks of world exhibitions . . . ; nevertheless, in every case they 
remain incomparably more powerful levers of human culture than the countless 
barracks and churches with which Berlin has been inundated at such great cost. 
The recurrent initiatives to establish a world exhibition have foundered, first of 
all, on the lack of energy . . . afflicting the bourgeoisie, and, second, on the poorly 
disguised resentment with which an absolutist-feudal militarism looks on anything 
that could threaten its — alas! — still germinating roots." <Anonymous,> "Klass- 
enkampfe," Die neue Zeit, 12, no. 2 (Stuttgart, 1894), p. 257. [G4a,2] 

On the occasion of the world exhibition of 1867, Victor Hugo issued a manifesto to 
the peoples of Europe. [G4a,3] 

Chevalier was a disciple of Enfantin. Editor of he Globe. [G4a,4] 

Apropos of Roland de la Platiere's Encyclopedic methodique: "Turning to les 
manufactures, . . . Roland writes: 'Industry is born of need. . . .' It might appear 
from this that the term is being used in the classical sense of industria. What 
follows provides clarification: 'But this fecund and perverse riverhead, of irregu- 
lar and retrogressive disposition, eventually came down from the uplands to flood 
the fields, and soon nothing could satisfy the need which overspread the land.' . . . 
What is significant is his ready employment of the word industrie, more than thirty 
years before the work of Chaptal." Henri Hauser, Les Debuts du capitalisme 
(Paris, 1931), pp. 315-316. [G4a,5] 

"With price tag affixed, the commodity comes on the market. Its material quality 
and individuality are merely an incentive for buying and selling; for the social 
measure of its value, such quality is of no importance whatsoever. The commodity 
has become an abstraction. Once escaped from the hand of the producer and 
divested of its real particularity, it ceases to be a product and to he ruled over by 
human beings. It has acquired a 'ghostly objectivity' and leads a life of its own. 'A 
commodity appears, at fi rst sight, to be a trivial and easily understood thing. Our 
analysis shows that, in reality, it is a vexed and complicated thing, abounding in 
metaphysical subtleties and theological niceties.' Cut off from the will of man, it 
aligns itself in a mysterious hierarchy, develops or declines exchangeability, and, 
in accordance withits own peculiar laws, performs as an actor on a phantom stage. 
In the language of the commodities exchange, cotton 'soars,' copper 'slumps,' 
corn 'is active,' coal 'is sluggish,' wheat 'is on the road to recovery,' and petro- 
leum 'displays a healthy trend.' Things have gained autonomy, and they take on 
human features. . . . The commodity has been transformed into an idol that, al- 
though the product of human hands, disposes over the human. Marx speaks of the 

fetish character of the commodity. 'This fetish character of the commodity world 
has its origin in the peculiar social character of the labor that produces commodi- 
ties. ... It is only the particular social relation between people that here assumes, 
in the eyes of these people, the phantasmagorical form of a relation between 
things.'" 6 Otto Riihle, KarlMarx (Hellerau <1928>), pp. 384-385. [G5,l] 

"According to official estimates, a total of about 750 workers, chosen by their 
comrades or else named by the entrepreneurs themselves, visited London's world 
exhibition in 1862. . . . The official character of this delegation, and the manner in 
which it was constituted, naturally inspired little confidence in the revolutionary 
and republican emigres from France. This circumstance perhaps explains why the 
idea of an organized reception for this deputation originated with the editors of an 
organ dedicated to the cooperative movement. ... At the urging of the editorial 
staff of The Working Man, a committee was formed to prepare a welcome for the 
French workers .... Those named to participate included . . . J . Morton Peto, . . . 
and Joseph Paxton. . . . The interests of industry were put foremost, . . . and the 
need for an agreement between workers and entrepreneurs, as the sole means of 
bettering the difficult condition of the workers, was strongly underlined. . . . We 
cannot . . . regard this gathering as the birthplace ... of the International Work- 
ingmen's Association. That is a legend. . . . The truth is simply that this visit 
acquired, through its indirect consequences, momentous importance as a key step 
on the way to an understanding between English and French workers." 
D. Rjazanov, "Zur Geschichte der ersten Internationale," in Marx-Engels Archiv, 
vol. 1 (Frankfurt am Main, 1928>, pp. 157, 159-160. [G5,2] 

"Already, for the first world exhibition in 1851, some of the workers proposed by 
the entrepreneurs were sent to London at the state's expense. There was also, 
however, an independent delegation dispatched to London on the initiative of 
Blanqui (the economist) and Emile de Girardin. . . . This delegation submitted a 
general report in which, to be sure, we find no trace of the attempt to establish a 
permanent liaison with English workers, but in which the need for peaceful rela- 
tions between England and France is stressed. ... In 1855, the second world 
exhibition took place, this time in Paris. Delegations of workers from the capital, 
as well as from the provinces, were now totally barred. It was feared that they 
would give workers an opportunity for organizing." D. Rjazanov, "Zur Geschichte 
del - ersten Internationale," in Marx-Engels Archiv, ed. Rjazanov, vol. 1 (Frank- 
furt am Main), pp. 150-151. [G5a,l] 

The subtleties of Grandville aptly express what Marx calls the "theological nice- 
ties'" of the commodity. [G5a,2] 

"The sense of taste is a carriage with four wheels, which are: (1) Gastronomy, (2) 
Cuisine; (3) Company; (4) Culture." From <Fourier's> ISouveau Monde industriel 
et societaire (1829), cited in E. Poisson, Fourier (Paris, 1932), p. 130. [G5a,3] 

Connection of the first world exhibition in London in 18 51 with the idea of free 
trade. [G5a,4] 

"The world exhibitions have lost much of their original character. The enthusiasm 
that, in 1851, was felt in the most disparate circles has subsided, and in its place 
has come a kind of cool calculation. In 1851, we were living in the era of free 
trade. . . . For some decades now, we have witnessed the spread of protection- 
ism. . . . Participation in the exhibition becomes ... a sort of representation . . . ; 
and whereas in 1850 the ruling tenet was that the government need not concern 
itself in this affair, the situation today is so far advanced that the government of 
each country can be considered a veritable entrepreneur." Julius Lessing, Das 
halbe Jahrhundert der Weltausstellungen (Berlin, 1900), pp. 29-30. [G5a,5] 

In London, in 1851, "appeared . . . the first cast-steel cannon by Krupp. Soon 
thereafter, the Prussian minister of war placed an order for more than 200 exem- 
plars of this model." Julius Lessing, Das halbe Jahrhundert der Weltausstellun- 
gen (Berlin, 1900), p. 11. [G5a,6] 

"From the same sphere of thought that engendered the great idea of free trade 
arose . . . the notion that no one would come away empty-handed — rather, the 
contrary — from an exhibition at which he had staked his best so as to be able to 
take home the best that other people had to offer. . . . This bold conception, in 
which the idea for the exhibition originated, was put into action. Within eight 
months, everything was finished. 'An absolute wonder that has become a part of 
history. ' At the foundation of the entire undertaking, remarkably enough, rests 
the principle that such a work must be backed not by the state but by the free 
activity of its citizens. . . . Originally, two private contractors, the Munday broth- 
ers, offered to build, at their own risk, a palace costing a million marks. But 
grander proportions were resolved on, and the necessary funds for guaranteeing 
the enterprise, totaling many millions, were subscribed in short order. The great 
new thought found a great new form. The engineer Paxton built the Crystal Pal- 
ace. In every land rang out the news of something fabulous and unprecedented: a 
palace of glass and iron was going to be built, one that would cover eighteen acres. 
Not long before this, Paxton had constructed a vaulted roof of glass and iron for 
one of the greenhouses at Kew, in which luxuriant palms were growing, and this 
achievement gave him the courage to take on the new task. Chosen as a site for the 
exhibition was the finest park in London, Hyde Park, which offered in the middle 
a wide open meadow, traversed along its shorter axis by an avenue of splendid 
elms. But anxious onlookers soon raised a cry of alarm lest these trees be sacrificed 
for the sake of a whim. 'Then I shall roof over the trees,' was Paxton's answer, and 
he proceeded to design the transept, which, with its semicylindrical vault elevated 
112 feet above the ground, . . . accommodated the whole row of elms. It is in the 
highest degree remarkable and significant that this Great Exhibition of London — 
born of modern conceptions of steam power, electricity, and photography, and 
modern conceptions of free trade — should at the same time have afforded the 

decisive impetus, within this period as a whole, for the revolution in artistic forms. 
To build a palace out of glass and iron seemed to the world, in those days, a 
fantastic inspiration for a temporary piece of architecture. We see now that it was 
the first great advance on the road to a wholly new world of forms. . . . The con- 
structive style, as opposed to the historical style, has become the watchword of the 
modern movement. When did this idea make its triumphal entry into the world? In 
the year 1851, with the Crystal Palace in London. At first, people thought it impos- 
sible that a palace of colossal proportions could be built f rom glass and iron. In the 
publications of the day, we find the idea of assembling iron components, so famil- 
iar to us now, represented as something extraordinary. England can boast of hav- 
ing accomplished this quite novel task in the space of eight months, using its 
existing factories, without any additional capacity. One points out triumphantly 
that ... in the sixteenth century a small glazed window was still a luxury item, 
whereas today a building covering eighteen acres can be constructed entirely out 
of glass. To a manlike Lothar Bucher, the meaning of this new structure was clear: 
it was the undisguised architectural expression of the transverse strength of slen- 
der iron components. But the fantastic charm which the edifice exerted on all souls 
went well beyond such a characterization, however crucial for the program of the 
future; and in this regard, the preservation of the magnificent row of trees for the 
central transept was of capital importance. Into this space were transported all the 
horticultural glories which the rich conservatories of England had been able to 
cultivate. Lightly plumed palms from the tropics mingled with the leafy crowns of 
the five-hundred-year-old elms; and within this enchanted forest the decorators 
arranged masterpieces of plastic art, statuary, large bronzes, and specimens of 
other artworks. At the center stood an imposing crystal fountain. To the right and 
to the left ran galleries in which visitors passed from one national exhibit to the 
other. Overall, it seemed a wonderland, appealing more to the imagination than to 
the intellect. 'It is with sober economy of phrase that I term the prospect incompa- 
rably fairy-like. This space is a summer night's dream in the midnight sun 1 
(Lothar Bucher). Such sentiments were registered throughout the world. I myself 
recall, from my childhood, how the news of the Crystal Palace reached us in 
Germany, and how pictures of it were hung in the middle-class parlors of distant 
provincial towns. It seemed then that the world we knew from old fairy tales — of 
the princess in the glass coffin, of queens and elves dwelling in crystal houses — had 
come to life . . . , and these impressions have persisted through the decades. The 
great transept of the palace and part of the pavilions were transferred to Syden- 
ham, where the building stands today;" there I saw it in 1862, with feelings of awe 
and the sheerest delight. It has taken four decades, numerous fires, and many 
depredations to ruin this magic, although even today it is still not completely 
vanished." Julius Lessing, Das halbe ] ahrhundert der Weltausstellungen (Berlin, 

1900), pp. 6-10. 

[G6; G6a,l] 

Organizing the New York exhibition of 1853 fell to Phineas Barnum. 


"Le Play has calculated that the number of years required to prepare a world 
exhibition equals the number of months it runs. . . . There is obviously a shocking 

Exterior of the Crystal Palace, London. See G6; G6a,l. 

disproportion here between the period of gestation and the duration of the enter- 
prise." Maurice Pecard, Les Expositions internationales au point de vue econo- 
mique et social, particulierement en France (Paris, 1901), p. 23. [G6a,3] 

A bookseller's poster appears in Les Murailles revolutionnaires de 1848 with the 
following explanatory remark: "We offer this afjiche, as later we shall offer others 
unrelated to the elections or to the political events of the day. We offer it hecause it 
tells why and how certain manufacturers profi t from certain occasions." From the 
poster: "Read this important notice against Swindlers. Monsieur Alexandre 
Pierre, wishing to stop the daily abuses created hy the general ignorance of the 
Argot and Jargon of swindlers and dangerous men, has made good use of the 
unhappy time he was forced to spend with them as a victim of the fallen Govern- 
ment; now restored to liberty by our noble Repuhlic, he has just puhlished the 
fruit of those sad studies he was able to make in prison. He is not afraid to descend 

into the midst «f these horrible places, and even into the Lions' Den, if hy these 
means ... he can shed light on the principal words of their conversations, and 
thus make it possible to avoid the misfortunes and abuses that result from not 
knowing these words, which until now were intelligible only to swindlers. . . . On 
sale from public vendors and from the Author." Les Murailles revolutionnaires de 
1848 (Paris <1852>), vol. 1, p. 320. [G7,l] 

If the commodity was a fetish, then Grandville was the tribal sorcerer. [G7,2] 

Second Empire: "The government's candidates . . . were able to print their procla- 
mations on white paper, a color reserved exclusively for official publications." 
A. Malet and P. Grillet, XIX" siecle (Paris, 1919), p. 271. [G7,3] 

Injugendstil we see, for the first time, the integration of the human body into 
advertising. D Jugendstil □ [G7,4] 

Worker delegations at the world exhibition of 1867. At the top of the agenda is the 
demand for the abrogation of Article 1781 of the Civil Code, which reads: "The 
employer's word shall be taken as true in his statement of wages apportioned, of 
salary paid for the year ended, and of accounts given for the current year" 
(p. 140). — "The delegations of workers at the exhibitions of London and Paris in 
1862 and in 1867 gave a direction to the social movement of the Second Empire, 
and even, we may say, to that of the second half of the nineteenth century. . . . 
Their reports were compared to the records of the Estates General; the former 
were the signal for a social evolution, just as the latter, in 1789, had been the cause 
of a political and economic revolution" (p. 207). — [This comparison comes from 
Michel Chevalier.] Demand for a ten-hour workday (p. 121). — "Four hundred 
thousand free tickets were distributed to the workers of Paris and various 
departements . A barracks with more than 30,000 beds was put at the disposal of 
the visiting workers" (p. 84). Henry Fougere, Les Delegations ouvrieres aux expo- 
sitions universelles (Montlucon, 1905). [G7,5] 

Gatherings of worker delegations of 1867 at the "training ground of the Passage 
Raoul." Fougere, p. 85. [G7a,l] 

"The exhibition had long since closed, but the delegates continued their discus- 
sions, and the parliament of workers kept holding sessions in the Passage Raoul." 
Henry Fougere, Les Delegations ouvrieres aux expositions universelles sous le 
second empire (Montlucon, 1905), pp. 86-87. Altogether, the sessions lasted from 
July 21,1867, until July 14, 1869. [G7a,2] 

International Association of Workers. '"The Association . . . dates from 1862, 
from the time of the world exhibition in London. It was there that English and 
French workers first met, to hold discussions and seek mutual enlightenment.' 
Statement made by M. Tolain on March 6, 1868, . . . during thefirst suit brought 

by the government against the International Association of Workers." Henry 
Fougere, Les Delegations ouvrieres aux expositions universelles sous le second 
empire (Montlucon, 1905), p. 75. The first great meeting in London drafted a 
declaration of sympathy for the liberation of the Poles. [G7a,3] 

In the three or four reports by the worker delegations who took part in the world 
exhibition of 1867, there are demands for the abolition of standing armies and for 
general disarmament. Delegations of porcelain painters, piano repairmen, shoe- 
makers, and mechanics. See Fougere, pp. 163-164.. [G7a,4] 

1867. "Whoever visited the Champ de Mars for the first time got a singular impres- 
sion. Arriving by the central avenue, he saw at first . . . only iron and smoke. . . . 
This initial impression exerted such an influence on the visitor that, ignoring the 
tempting diversions offered by the arcade, he would hasten toward the movement 
and noise that attracted him. At every point . . . where the machines were momen- 
tarily still, he could hear the strains of steam-powered organs and the symphonies 
of brass instruments." A. S. de Doncourt, Les Expositions universelles (Lille and 
Paris <1889>), pp. 111-112. [G7a,5] 

Theatrical works pertaining to the world exhibition of 1855: Paris trop petit, 
August 4, 1855, Theatre du Luxembourg; Paul Meurice, Paris, July 21, Porte- 
Saint-Martin; Theodore Barriere and Paul de Kock, L 'Histoire de Paris and Les 
Grands Siecles, September 29; Les Modes de Vex position; Dzim boom boom: Re- 
vue de V exhibition; Sebastien Rheal, La Vision de Faustus, ou L 'Exposition uni- 
verselle de 1855. In Adolphe Demy, Esstii historique sur les expositions 
universelles de Paris (Paris, 1907), p. 90. [G7a,6] 

London's world exhibition of 1862: "No trace remained of the edifying impression 
made hy the exhibition of 1851. . . . Nevertheless, this exhibition had some note- 
worthy results. . . . The greatest surprise . . . came from China. Up l:o this time, 
Europe had seen nothing of Chinese art except . . . the ordinary porcelains sold on 
the market. But now I he Anglo-Chinese war had taken place . . ., and the Summer 
Palace had been burned to the ground, supposedly as punishment. '' In truth, 
however, the English had succeeded even more than their allies, the French, in 
carrying away a large portion of the treasures amassed in that palace, and these 
treasures were subsequently put on exhibit in London in 1862. For the sake of 
discretion, it was women rather than men . . . who acted as exhibitors." Julius 
Lessing, Das halbe Jahrhundert der Weltausstellungen (Berlin, 1900), p. 16. 


Lessing (Das halbe Jahrhundert der Weltausstellungen [Berlin, 1900], p. 4) 
points up the difference between the world exhibitions and the fairs. For the latter, 
the merchants hrought their whole stock of goods along with them. The world 
exhibitions presuppose a considerable development of commercial as well as in- 

dustrial credit — that is to say, credit on the part of the customers, as well as on the 
part of the firms taking their orders. [G8,2] 

"You deliberately had to close your eyes in order not to realize that the fair on the 
Champ de Mars in 1798, that the superb porticoes of the courtyard of the Louvre 
and the courtyard of the Invalides constructed in the following years, and, finally, 
that the memorahle royal ordinance of January 13, 1819,"' have powerfully con- 
tributed to the glorious development of French industry. ... It was reserved for 
the king of France to transform the magnificent galleries of his palace into an 
immense bazaar, in order that his people might contemplate . . . these unblooclied 
trophies raised up by the genius of the arts and the genius of peace." <J»seph- 
Charles> Chenou and H.D., Notice sur V exposition des produits de I'industrie et 
des arts qui a eu lieu a Douai en 1827 (Douai, 1827), p. 5. [G8,3] 

Three different delegations of workers were sent to London in 1851; none of 
them accomplished anything significant. Two were official: one represented the 
National Assembly, and one the municipality of Paris. The private delegation 
was put together with the support of the press, in particular of Emile de Girardin. 
The workers themselves played no part in assembling these delegations. [G8,4] 

The dimensions of the Crystal Palace, according to A. S. Doncourt, Les Exposi- 
tions universelles (Lille and Paris <1889>), p. 12. The long sides measured 560 
meters. [G8,5] 

On the workers' delegations to the Great Exhibition in London in 1862: "Electoral 
offices were being rapidly organized when, on the eve of elections, an incident . . . 
arose to impede the operations. The Paris police . . . took umbrage at this unprece- 
dented development, and the Workers Commission was ordered to cease its ac- 
tivities. Convinced that this measure . . . could only be the result of a mis- 
understanding, members of the Commission took their appeal directly to His 
Majesty. . . . The emperor . . . was, in fact, willing to authorize the Commisssion to 
pursue its task. The elections . . . resulted in the selection of two hundred dele- 
gates .... A period of ten days had been granted to each group to accomplish its 
mission. Each delegate received, on his departure, the sum of 115 francs, a sec- 
ond-class round-trip train ticket, lodging, and a meal, as well as a pass to the 
exhibition. . . . This great popular movement took place without the slightest inci- 
dent that . . . could have been termed regrettable." Rapports des delegues des 
ou.vriers parisiens a Vexposition de Londres en 1862, publies par la Commission 
ouvriere (Paris, 1862-1864) [1 vol.!], pp. iii-iv. (The document contains fifty- 
three reports by delegations from the different trades.) [G8a,l] 

Paris, 1855. "Four locomotives were guarding the hall of machines, like those 
great bulls of Ninevah, or like the sphinxes to be seen at the entrance to Egyptian 
temples. This hall was a land of iron and fire and water; the ears were deafened, 
the eyes dazzled. . . . All was in motion. One saw wool combed, cloth twisted, yarn 

clipped, grain threshed, coal extracted, chocolate refined, and on and on. All 
exhibitors without exception were allowed motility and steam, contrary to what 
went on in London in 1851, when only the English exhibitors had had the benefit of 
fire and water." A. S. Doncourt, Les Expositions universelles (Lille and Paris 

<1889>), p. 53. [G8a,2] 

In 1867, the "oriental quarter" was the center of attraction. [G8a,3] 

Fifteen million visitors to the exhibition of 1867. [G8a,4] 

In 1855, for the first time, merchandise could be marked with a price. [G8a,5] 

"Le Play had . . . understood how necessary it would become to find what we call, 
in modern parlance, 'a draw' — some star attraction. He likewise foresaw that this 
necessity would lead to mismanagement of the exhibitions, and this is the issue . . . 
to which M. Claudio- Janet addressed himself in 1889: 'The economist M. Frederic 
Passy, a worthy man, has for many years now, in his speeches to Parliament and to 
the Academie, been denouncing the abuses of the street fairs. Everything he says 
about the gingerbread fair . . . can also be said (allowing for differences in magni- 
tude) of the great centennial celebration."' A note at this point: "The centennial 
celebration, in fact, was so successful that the Eiffel Tower, which cost 6 million 
francs, had already earned, by the fifth of November, 6,459,581 francs." Maurice 
Pecard, Les Expositions internationales au point de vue economique et sociale, 
particulierement en France (Paris, 1901), p. 29. [G9,l] 

The exhibition palace of 1867 on the Champ de Mars — compared by some to 
Rome's Colosseum: "The arrangement conceived by Le Play, the head of the exhi- 
bition committee, was a most felicitous one. The objects on exhibit were distrib- 
uted, according to their materials, in eight concentric galleries; twelve avenues . . . 
branched out from the center, and the principal nations occupied the sectors cut 
by those radii. In this way, ... by strolling around the galleries, one could . . . 
survey the state of one particular industry in all the different countries, whereas, 
by strolling up the avenues that crossed them, one could survey the state of the 
different branches of industry in each particular country." Adolphe Demy, Essai 
historique sur les expositions universelles de Paris (Paris, 1907), p. 129. — Cited 
here is Theophile Gautier's article about the palace in Le Moniteur of September 
17, 1867: "We have before us, it seems, a monument created on another planet, on 
Jupiter or Saturn, according to a taste we do not recognize and with a coloration to 
which our eyes are not accustomed." Just before this: "The great azure gulf, with 
its blood-colored rim, produces a vertiginous effect and unsettles our ideas of 
architecture.'" [G9,2] 

Resistance to the world exhibition of 1851: "The king of Prussia forbade the royal 
prince and princess . . . from traveling to London. . . . The diplomatic corps re- 
fused to address any word of congratulations to the queen. 'At this moment,' 

wrote . . . Prince Albert to his mother on April 15, 1851, . . . 'the opponents of the 
Exhibition are hard at work. . . . The foreigners, they cry, will start a radical 
revolution here; they will kill Victoria and myself and proclaim a red republic. 
Moreover, the plague will surely result from the influx of such multitudes and will 
devour those who have not been driven away by the high prices on everything.'" 
Adolphe Demy, Essai historique sur les expositions universelles (Paris, 1907), 
p. 38. [G9,3] 

Francois de Neuf chateau on the exhibition of 1798 (in Demy, Essai historique sur 
les expositions universelles). '"The French,' he declared, . . . 'have amazed 
Europe by the swiftness of their military successes; they should launch a career in 
commerce and the arts with just the same fervor'" (p. 14). "This initial exposition 
... is really an initial campaign, a campaign disastrous for English industry" 
(p. 18). — Martial character of the opening procession: "(1) a contingent of trum- 
peters; (2) a detachment of cavalry; (3) the first two squads of mace bearers; (4) 
the drums; (5) a military marching band; (6) a squad of infantry; (7) the heralds; 
(8) the festival marshal; (9) the artists registered in tbe exhibition; (10) the jury" 
(p. 15). — Neuf chateau awards the gold medal to the most heroic assault on English 
industry. [G9a,l] 

The second exhibition, in Year IX," was supposed to bring together, in the court- 
yard of the Louvre, works of industry and of the plastic arts. But the artists 
refused to exhibit their work alongside that of manufacturers (Demy, p. 19). 


Exhibition of 1819. "The king, on the occasion of the exhibition, conferred the 
title of baron on Ternaux and Oberkampf. . . . The granting of aristocratic titles to 
industrialists had provoked some criticisms. In 1823, no new titles were con- 
ferred." Demy, Essai historique, p. 24. [G9a,3] 

Exhibition of 1844. Madame de Girardin's comments on the event, <in> Vicomte de 
Launay, Lettres parisiennes, vol. 4, p. 66 (cited in Demy, Essai historique, p. 27): 
'"Itis a pleasure,' she remarked, 'strangely akin to a nightmare.' And she went on 
to enumerate the singularities, of which there was no lack: the flayed horse, the 
colossal beetle, the moving jaw, the chronometric Turk who marked the hours by 
the number of bis somersaults, and — last but not least — M. and Mme. Pipelet, the 
concierges in Les Mysteres de Paris, 1 ' 2 as angels." [G9a,4] 

World exhibition of 1851: 14,837 exhibitors; that of 1855: 80,000. [G9a,5] 

In 1867, the Egyptian exhibit was housed in a building whose design was based on 
an Egyptian temple. [G9a,6] 

In his novel The Fortress, Walpole describes the precautions that were taken in a 
lodging-house specially designed to welcome visitors to the world exhibition of 

1851. These precautions included continuous police surveillance of the dormito- 
ries, the presence of a chaplain, and a regular morning visit by a doctor. [G10,1] 

Walpole describes the Crystal Palace, with the glass fountain at its center and the 
old elms — the latter "looking almost like the lions of the forest caught in a net of 
glass" (p. 307). He describes the booths decorated with expensive carpets, and 
above all the machines. "There were in the machine-room the 'self-acting mules,' 
the Jacquard lace machines, the envelope machines, the power looms, the model 
locomotives, centrifugal pumps, the vertical steam-engines, all of these working 
like mad, while the thousands nearby, in their high hats and bonnets, sat patiently 
waiting, passive, unwitting that the Age of Man on this Planet was doomed." Hugh 
Walpole, The Fortress (Hamburg, Paris, and Bologna <1933>), p. 306. 13 [G10.2] 

Delvau speaks of "men who, each evening, have their eyes glued to the display 
window of La Belle Jardinere to watch the day's receipts being counted." Alfred 
Delvau, Les Heures parisiennes (Paris, 1866), p. 144 ("Huit heures du soir"). 


In a speech to the Senate, on January 31, 1868, Michel Chevalier makes an effort 
to save the previous year's Palace of Industry from destruction. Of the various 
possibilities he lays out for salvaging the building, the most noteworthy is that of 
using the interior — which, with its circular form, is ideally suited to such a pur- 
pose — for practicing troop maneuvers. He also proposes developing the structure 
into a permanent merchandise mart for imports. The intention of the opposing 
party seems to have been to keep the Champ de Mars free of all construction — this 
for military reasons. See Michel Chevalier, Discours sur line petition reclamant 
contre la destruction du palais de VExposition universelle de 1867 (Paris, 1868). 


"The world exhibitions . . . cannot fail to provoke the most exact comparisons 
between the prices and the qualities of the same article as produced in different 
countries. How the school of absolute freedom of trade rejoices then! The world 
exhibitions contribute ... to the reduction, if not the abolition, of custom duties." 
Achille de Colusont <?>, Histoire des expositions des produits de I'industrie 
franqaise (Paris, 1855), p. 544. [G10a,l] 

Every industry, in exhibiting its trophies 
In this bazaar of universal progress, 
Seems to have borrowed a fairy's magic wand 
To bless the Crystal Palace. 

Rich men, scholars, artists, proletarians — 
Each one lahors for the common good; 
And, joining together like noble brothers, 
All have at heart the happiness of each. 

ClairviJle and Jules Cordier, he Palais de Cristal, ou Les Parisiens a Londres 
[Theatre de la Porte-Saint-Martin, May 26, 1851] (Paris, 1851), p. 6. [G10a,2] 

The last two tableaux from ClairviJle's Palais de Cristal take place in front of and 
inside the Crystal Palace. The stage directions for the <next to> last tableau: "The 
main gallery of the Crystal Palace. To the left, downstage, a bed, at the head of 
which is a large dial. At center stage, a small table holding small sacks and pots of 
earth. To the right, an electrical machine. Toward the rear, an exhibition of vari- 
ous products (based on the descriptive engraving done in London)" (p. 30). 


Advertisement for Marquis Chocolates, from 1846: "Chocolate from La Maison 
Marquis, 44 Rue Vivienne, at the Passage des Panoramas. — The time has come 
when chocolate praline, and all the other varieties of chocolat defantaisie, will be 
available . . . from the House of Marquis in the most varied and graceful of 
forms. . . . We are privileged to be able to announce to our readers that, once 
again, an assortment of pleasing verses, judiciously selected from among the year's 
purest, most gracious, and most elevated publications, will accompany the exqui- 
site confections of Marquis. Confident in the favorable advantage that is ours 
alone, we rejoice to bring together that puissant name with so much lovely verse." 
Cabinet des Estampes. [G10a,4] 

Palace of Industry, 1855: "Six pavilions border the building on four sides, and 306 
arcades run through the lower story. An enormous glass roof provides light to the 
interior. As materials, only stone, iron, and zinc have been used; building costs 
amounted to 11 million francs. . . . Of particular interest are two large paintings 
on glass at the eastern and western ends of the main gallery. . . . The figures repre- 
sented on these appear to be life-size, yet are no less than six meters high." Acht 
Tage in Paris (Paris, July 1855), pp. 9-10. The paintings on glass show figures 
representing industrial France and Justice. [Gll,l] 

"I have . . . written, together with my collaborators on L'Atelier, that the moment 
for economic revolution has come . . . , although we had all agreed some time 
previously that the workers of Europe had achieved solidarity and that it was 
necessary now to move on, before anything else, to the idea of a political federation 
of peoples." A. Corbon, he Secret du peuple de Paris (Paris, 1863), p. 196. Also 
p. 242: "In sum, the political attitude of the working class of Paris consists almost 
entirely in the passionate desire to serve the movement of federation of nationali- 
ties." [G11.2] 

Nina Lassave, Fieschi's beloved, was employed, after his execution on February 
19, 1836, as a cashier at the Cafe de la Renaissance on the Place de la Bourse. 


Animal symbolism in Toussenel: the mole. "The mole is . . . not the emhlem of a 
single character. It is the emblem of a whole social period: the period of industry's 


infancy, the Cyclopean period. ... It is the . . . allegorical expression of the abso- E 
lute predominance of brute force over intellectual force. . . . Many estimable 
analogists (ind a marked resemblance between moles, which upturn the soil and 
pierce passages of subterranean communication, . . . and the monopolizers of rail- 
roads and stage routes. . . . The extreme nervous sensibility of the mole, which 
fears the light . . . , admirably characterizes the obstinate obscurantism of those g- 
monopolizers of banking and of transportation, who also fear the light." 5 
A. Toussenel, L'Esprit des betes: Zoologie passionnelle — Mammiferes de France ^ 
(Paris, 1884), pp. 469, 473-474. 1 ' 1 [G11.4] | 

Animal symbolism in Toussenel: the marmot. "The marmot . . . loses its hair at its q 

work — in allusion to the painful labor of the chimney sweep, who rubs and spoils g 

his clothes in his occupation." A. Toussenel, L'Esprit des betes (Paris, 1884), ^ 
p. 334. lr ' [Gll,5] 

Plant symbolism in Toussenel: the vine. "The vine loves to gossip . . . ; it mounts 
familiarly to the shoulder of plum tree, olive, or elm, and is intimate with all the 
trees." A. Toussenel, L'Esprit des betes (Paris, 1884), p. 107. [Gll.6] 

Toussenel expounds the theory of the circle and of the parabola with reference 
to the different childhood games of the two sexes. This recalls the anthropo- 
morphisms of Grandville. "The figures preferred by childhood are invariably 
round — the ball, the hoop, the marble; also the fruits which it prefers: the cherry, 
the gooseberry, the apple, the jam tart. . . . The analogist, who has observed these 
games with continued attention, has not failed to remark a characteristic differ- 
ence in the choice of amusements, and the favorite exercises, of the children of 
the two sexes. . . . What then has our observer remarked in the character of the 
games of feminine infancy? He has remarked in the character of these games a 
decided proclivity toward the ellipse. / 1 observe among the favorite games of 
feminine infancy the shuttlecock and the jump rope. . . . Both the rope and the 
cord describe parabolic or elliptical curves. Why so? Why, at such an early age, 
tliis preference of the minor sex for the elliptical curve, this manifest contempt for 
marbles, ball, and top? Because the ellipse is the curve of love, as the circle is that 
of friendship. The ellipse is the figure in which God . . . has profiled the form of 
His favorite creatures — woman, swan, Arabian horse, dove; the ellipse is the 
essentially attractive form. . . . Astronomers were generally ignorant as to why 
the planets describe ellipses and not circumferences around their pivot of attrac- 
tion; they now know as much about this mystery as I do." A. Toussenel, L'Esprit 
des betes, pp. 89-91. 16 [Glla.l] 

Toussenel posits a symbolism of curves, according to which the circle represents 
friendship; the ellipse, love; the parabola, the sense of family; the hyperbola, 
ambition. In the paragraph concerning the hyperbola, there is a passage closely 
related to Grandville: "The hyperbola is the curve of ambition. . . . Admire die 
determined persistence of the ardent asymptote pursuing the hyperbola in head- 

long eagerness: it approaches, always approaches, its goal . . . but never attains 
it." A. Toussenel, LEsprit des betes (Paris, 1884), p. 92. 17 [Glla,2] 

Animal symbolism in Toussenel: the hedgehog. "Gluttonous and repulsive, it is 
also the portrait of the scurvy slave of the pen, trafficking with all subjects, selling 
postmaster's appointments and theater passes, . . . and drawing . . . from his 
sorry Christian conscience pledges and apologies at fixed prices. ... It is said that 
the hedgehog is the only quadruped of France on which the venom of the viper has 
no effect. I should have guessed this exception merely from analogy. . . . For 
explain . . . how calumny (the viper) can sting the literary blackguard." 
A. Toussenel, L'Esprit des betes (Paris, 1884), pp. 476, 478. 1(i [Glla,3] 

"Lightning is the kiss of clouds, stormy but faithful. Two lovers who adore each 
other, and who will tell it in spite of all ohstacles, are two clouds animated with 
opposite electricities, and swelled with tragedy." A. Toussenel, L'Esprit des betes: 
Zoologie passionnelle — Mammiferes de France, 4th ed. (Paris, 1884), pp. 100- 
101. 19 [G12.1] 

The first edition of Toussenel's L'Esprit des betes appeared in 1847. [G12,2] 

"I have vainly questioned the archives of antiquity to find traces of the setter dog. 
I have appealed to the memory of the most lucid somnambulists to ascertain the 
epoch when this race appeared. All the information I could procure . . . leads to 
this conclusion: the setter dog is a creation of modern times." A. Toussenel, L'Es- 
prit des betes (Paris, 1884), p. 159. 20 [G12.3] 

"A heautiful young woman is a true voltaic cell, ... in which the captive fluid is 
retained by the form of surfaces and the isolating virtue of the hair; so that when 
this fluid would escape from its sweet prison, it must make incredihle efforts, 
which produce in turn, by influence on bodies differently animated, fearful rav- 
ages of attraction. . . . The history of the human race swarms with examples of 
intelligent and learned men, intrepid heroes, . . . transfixed merely hy a woman's 
eye. . . . The holy King David proved that he perfectly understood the condensing 
properties of polished elliptical surfaces when he took unto himself the young 
Abigail." A. Toussenel, L'Esprit des betes (Paris, 1884), pp. 101-103. 21 [G12,4] 

Toussenel explains the rotation of the earth as the resultant of a centrifugal force 
and a force of attraction. Further on: "The star . . . begins to waltz its frenetic 
waltz. . . . Everything rustles, stirs, warms up, shines on the surface of the globe, 
which only the evening before was entomhed in the frigid silence of night. Marvel- 
ous spectacle for the well-placed observer — change of scene wonderful to behold. 
For the revolution took place between two suns and, that very evening, an ame- 
thyst star made its first appearance in our skies" (p. 45). And, alluding to the 
volcanism of earlier epochs of the earth: "We know the effects which the first waltz 
usually has on delicate constitutions. . . . The Earth, too, was rudely awakened by 

its first ordeal." A. Toussenel, L'Esprit des betes: Zoologie passionnelle (Paris, 
1884), pp. 44^15. [G12.5] 

Principle of Toussenel's zoology: "The rank of the species is in direct proportion to 
its resemblance to the human being." A. Toussenel, L'Esprit des betes (Paris, 
1884), p. i. Compare the epigraph to the work: '"The best thing about man is his 
dog.'— Charlet." [G12a,l] 

The aeronaut Poitevin, sustained by great publicity, undertook an "ascent to Ura- 
nus" accompanied in the gondola of his balloon by young women dressed as 
mythological figures. Paris sous la Republique de 1848: Exposition de la Bib- 
liotheque et des travaux historiques de I* Ville de Paiis (1909), p. 34. [G12a,2] 

We can speak of a fetishistic autonomy not only with regard to the commodity 
but also — as the following passage from Marx indicates — with regard to the 
means of production: "If we consider the process of production from the point of 
view of the simple labor process, the laborer stands, in relation to the means of 
production, ... as the mere means ... of his own intelligent productive activ- 
ity. . . . But it is different as soon as we deal with the process of production from 
the point of view of the process of surplus- value creation. The means of produc- 
tion are at once changed into means for the absorption of the labor of others. It is 
now no longer the laborer that employs the means of production, but the means 
of production that employ the laborer. Instead of being consumed by him as 
material elements of his productive activity, they consume him as the ferment 
necessary to their own life process. . . . Furnaces and workshops that stand idle 
by night, and absorb no living labor, are a 'mere loss' to the capitalist. Hence, 
furnaces and workshops constitute lawful claims upon the night labor of the 
workpeople." 22 This observation can be applied to the analysis of Grandville. To 
what extent is the hired laborer the "soul" of Grandville's fetishistically animated 
objects? [G12a,3] 

"Night distributes the stellar essence to the sleeping plants. Every bird which flies 
has the thread of the infinite in its claw." Victor Hugo, Oeuvres completes (Paris, 
1881), novels, vol. 8, p. 114 (Les Miserables, book 4). 23 [G12a,4] 

Drumont calls Toussenel "one of the greatest prose writers of the century." 
Edouard Drumont, Les Heros et les pitres (Paris <1900>), p. 270 ("Toussenel"). 


Technique of exhibition: "A fundamental rule, quickly learned through observa- 
tion, is that no object should be placed directly on the floor, on a level with the 
walkways. Pianos, furniture, physical apparatus, and machines are better dis- 
played on a pedestal or raised platform. The best exhibits make use of two quite 
distinct systems: displays under glass and open displays. To be sure, some prod- 
ncts, by their very nature or hecause of their value, have to be protected from 

contact with the air or the hand; others benefit from being left uncovered." Expo- 
sition universelle de 1867, a Paris: Album des installations les plus remarquables 
de VExposition de 1862, a Londres, publie par la commission imperiale pour 
servir de renseignement aux exposants des diver ses nations (Paris, 1866) <p. 5>. 
Album of plates in large folio, with very interesting illustrations, some in color, 
showing — in cross-section or longitudinal section, as the case may be — the pavil- 
ions of the world exhibition of 1862. Bibliotheque Nationale, V.644. [G13,l] 

Paris in the year 2855: "Our many visitors from Saturn and Mars have entirely 
forgotten, since arriving here, the horizons of their mother planet! Paris is hence- 
forward the capital of creation! . . . Where are you, Champs-Elysees, favored 
theme of newswriters in 1855? . . . Buzzing along this thoroughfare that is paved 
with hollow iron and roofed with crystal are the bees and hornets of finance! The 
capitalists of Ursa Major are conferring with the stockbrokers of Mercury! And 
coming on the market this very day are shares in the debris of Venus half con- 
sumed by its own flames!" Arsene Houssaye, "Le Paris futur," in Paris et les 
Parisiens au XIX" siecle (Paris, 1856), pp. 458-459. [G13.2] 

At the time of the establishment, in London, of the General Council of the Workers 
International, 24 the following remark circulated: "The child born in the work- 
shops of Paris was nursed in London." See Charles Benoist, "Le 'My the' de la 
classe ouvriere," Revue des deux mondes (March 1, 1914), p. 104. [G13,3] 

"Seeing that the gala ball is the sole occasion on which men contain themselves, let 
us get used to modeling all our institutions on gatherings such as these, where the 
woman is queen." A. Toussenel, Le Monde des oiseaux, vol. 1 (Paris, 1853), 
p. 134. And: "Many men are courteous and gallant at a ball, doubting not that 
gallantry is a commandment of God" (ibid., p. 98). [G13,4] 

On Gabriel Engelmann: "When he published his Essais lithographiques in 1816, 
great care was taken to reproduce this medallion as the frontispiece to his book, 
with the inscription: 'Awarded to M. G. Engelmann of Mulhouse (Upper Rhine). 
Large-scale execution, and refinement, of the art of lithography. Encouragement. 
1816. Henri Bouchot, La Lithographie (Paris <1895>), p. <38>. [G13,5] 

On the London world exhibition: "In making the rounds of this enormous exhibi- 
tion, the observer soon realizes that, to avoid confusion, ... it has been necessary 
to cluster the different nationalities in a certain number of groups, and that the 
only useful way of establishing these industrial groupings was to do so on the basis 
of — oddly enough — religious beliefs. Each of the great religious divisions of hu- 
manity corresponds, in effect, ... to a particular mode of existence and of indus- 
trial activity. "Michel Chevalier, Du Progres (Paris, 1852), p. 13. [G13a,l] 

From the first chapter of Capital: "A commodity appears, at first sight, a very 
trivial thing and easily understood. Its analysis shows that in reality it is a very 

queer thing, abounding in metaphysical subtleties and theological niceties. So far 
as it is a value in use, there is nothing mysterious about it. . . . The form of wood is 
altered by making a table out of it; nevertheless, this table remains wood, an 
ordinary material thing. As soon as it steps forth as commodity, however, it is 
transformed into a material immaterial thing. It not only stands with its feet on the 
ground, but, in the face of all other commodities, it stands on its head, and out of 
its wooden brain it evolves notions more whimsically than if it had suddenly begun 
to dance." 25 Cited in Franz Mehring, "Karl Marx und das Gleichnis," in Karl 
Marx als Denker, Mensch, unci Revolutiondr, ed. Rjazanov (Vienna and Berlin 
<1928>), p. 57 (first published in Die neue Zeit, March 13, 1908). [G13a,2] 

Renan compares the world exhibitions to the great Greek festivals, the Olympian 
games, and the Panathenaea. But in contrast to these, the world exhibitions lack 
poetry. "Twice, Europe has gone off to view the merchandise and to compare 
products and materials; and on returning from this new kind of pilgrimage, no one 
has complained of missing anything." Some pages later: "Our century tends to- 
ward neither the good nor the had; it tends toward the mediocre. What succeeds in 
every endeavor nowadays is mediocrity." Ernest Renan, Essais de morale et de 
critique (Paris, 1859), pp. 356-357, 373 ("La Poesie de l'Exposition"). [G13a,3] 

Hashish vision in the casino at Aix-la-Chapelle. "The gaming table at Aix-la- 
Chapelle is nothing short of an international congress, where the coins of all king- 
doms and all countries are welcome. ... A storm of Leopolds, Friedrich Wilhelms, 
Queen Victorias, and Napoleons rain down ... on the table. Looking over this 
shining alluvium, I thought I could see . . . the effigies of the sovereigns . . . irrevo- 
cably fade from their respective ecus, guineas, or ducats, to make room for other 
visages entirely unknown to me. A great many of these faces . . . wore grimaces . . . 
of vexation, of greed, or of fury. There were happy ones too, but only a few. . . . 
Soon this phenomenon . . . grew dim and passed away, and another sort of vision, 
no less extraordinary, now loomed before me. . . . The bourgeois effigies which 
had supplanted the monarchs began themselves to move ahout within the metallic 
disks. . . that confined them. Before long, they had separated from the disks. They 
appeared in full relief; then their heads hurgeoned out into rounded forms. They 
had taken on . . . not only faces but living flesh. They had all sprung Lilliputian 
bodies. Everything assumed a shape . . . somehow or other; and creatures exactly 
like us, except for their size, . . . began to enliven the gaming table, from which all 
currency had vanished. I heard the ring of coins struck hy the steel of the crou- 
pier's rake, but this was all that remained of the old resonance ... of louis and 
ecus, which had become men. These poor myrmidons were now taking to their 
heels, frantic at the approach of the murderous rake of the croupier; but escape 
was impossible. . . . Then . . . the dwarfish stakes, obliged to admit defeat, were 
ruthlessly captured hy the fatal rake, which gathered them into the croupier's 
clutching hand. The croupier — how horrihle! — took up each small body daintily 
between his fingers and devoured it with gusto. In less than half an hour, I saw 
some half-dozen of these imprudent Lilliputians hurled into the abyss of this terri- 

ble tomb. . . . But what appalled me the most was that, on raising my eyes (alto- 
gether by chance) to the gallery surrounding this valley of death, I noticed not just 
an extraordinary likeness but a complete identity between the several kingpins 
playing the life-sized game and the miniature humans struggling there on the ta- 
hle. . . . What's more, these kingpins . . . appeared to me ... to collapse in des- 
peration precisely as their childlike facsimiles were overtaken hy the formidable 
rake. They seemed to share ... all the sensations of their little doubles; and never, 
for as long as I live, will I forget the look and the gesture — full of hatred and 
despair — which one of those gamhlers directed toward the hank at the very mo- 
ment that his tiny simulacrum, coralled by the rake, went to satisfy the ravenous 
appetite of the croupier." Felix Mornand, La Vic des eaux (Paris, 1862), pp. 219- 
221 ("Abc-la-Chapelle"). [G14] 

It would be useful to compare the way Grandville portrays machines to the way 
Chevalier, in 1852, still speaks of the railroad. He calculates that two locomo- 
tives, having a total of 400 horsepower, would correspond to 800 actual horses. 
How would it be possible to harness them up? How supply the fodder? And, in a 
note, he adds: "It must also be kept in mind that horses of flesh and blood have 
to rest after a brief journey; so that to furnish the same service as a locomotive, 
one must have on hand a very large number of animals." Michel Chevalier, 
Chemins de fer: Extrait du dictionnaire de I'economie politique (Paris, 1852), p. 10. 


The principles informing the exhibition of objects in the Galerie des Machines of 
1867 were derived from Le Play. [G14a,2] 

A divinatory representation of architectural aspects of the later world exhibitions 
is found in Gogol's essay "On Present-Day Architecture," which appeared in the 
mid-Thirties in his collection Arabesques. "Away with this academicism which 
commands that buildings be built all one size and in one style! A city should 
consist of many different styles of building, if we wish it to be pleasing to the eye. 
Let as many contrasting styles combine there as possible! Let the solemn Gothic 
and the richly embellished Byzantine arise in the same street, alongside colossal 
Egyptian halls and elegantly proportioned Greek structures! Let us see there the 
slightly concave milk-white cupola, the soaring church steeple, the oriental miter, 
the Italianate flat roof, the steep and heavily ornamented Flemish roof, the quad- 
rilateral pyramid, the cylindrical column, the faceted obelisk!" 26 Nikolai Gogol, 
"Sur l Architecture du temps present," cited in Wladimir Weidle, Les Abeilles 
d'Aristee (Paris <1936>), pp. 162-163 ("LAgonie de Part"). [G14a,3] 

Fourier refers to the folk wisdom that for some time has defined "Civilization" as 
le monde a rebours <the world contrariwise). [G14a,4] 

Fourier cannot resist describing a banquet held on the banks of the Euphrates to 
honor the victors in both a competition among zealous dam workers (600,000) and 

a contest of pastry cooks. The 600,000 athletes of industry are furnished with 
300,000 bottles of champagne, whose corks, at a signal from the "command 
tower," are all popped simultaneously. To echo throughout the "mountains of the 
Euphrates." Cited in <Armand ancb Maubl<anc, Fourier (Paris, 1937)>, vol. 2, 
pp. 178-179. [G14a,5] 

"Poor stars! Their role of resplendence is really a role of sacrifice. Creators and 
servants of the productive power of the planets, they possess none of their own 
and must resign themselves to the thankless and monotonous career of providing 
torchlight. They have luster without enjoyment; behind them shelter, invisible, 
the living creatures. These slave-queens are nevertheless of the same stuff as their 
happy subjects. . . . Dazzling flames today, they will one day be dark and cold, 
and only as planets can they be reborn to life after the shock that has volatilized 
the retinue and its queen into a nebula." A. Blanqui, L'Eternite par les astres (Paris, 
1872), pp. 69-70. Compare Goethe: "Euch bedaur' ich, ungliickselge Sterne" 
<I pity you, unhappy stars>. 27 [G15,l] 

"The sacristy, the stock exchange, and the barracks — those three musty lairs that 
together vomit night, misery, and death upon the nations. October 1869." Auguste 
Blanqui, Critique sociale (Paris, 1885), vol. 2, p. 351 ("Fragments et notes"). 


"A rich death is a closed ahyss." From the fifties. Auguste Blanqui, Critique so- 
ciale (Paris, 1885), vol. 2, p. 315 ("Fragments et notes"). [G15,3] 

An image d'Epinal by Sellerie shows the world exhibition of 1855. [G15,4] 

Elements of intoxication at work in the detective novel, whose mechanism is 
described by Caillois (in terms that recall the world of the hashish eater) : "The 
characters of the childish imagination and a prevailing artificiality hold sway over 
this strangely vivid world. Nothing happens here that is not long premeditated; 
nothing corresponds to appearances. Rather, each thing has been prepared for 
use at the right moment by the omnipotent hero who wields power over it. We 
recognize in all this the Paris of the serial installments of Fantomas." Roger Cail- 
lois, "Paris, mythe moderne," Nouvelle Revue frangaise, 25, no. 284 (May 1, 1937), 
p. 688. [G15.5] 

"Every day I see passing beneath my window a certain number of Kalmucks, 
Osages, Indians, Chinamen, and ancient Greeks, all more or less Parisianized." 
Charles Baudelaire, Oeuvres, <ed. and annotated by Y.-G. Le Dantec (Paris, 
1932),> vol. 2, p. 99 ("Salon de 1846," section 7, "De lTdeal et du modele"). 21! 


Advertising under the Empire, according to Ferdinand Brunot, Histoire de la 
langue francaise des origines a 1900, vol. 9, La Revolution et I'Empire, part 9, 

"Les Evenements, les institutions et la langue" (Paris, 1937): "We shall freely 
imagine that a man of genius conceived the idea of enshrining, within the banality 
of the vernacular, certain vocables calculated to seduce readers and buyers, and 
that he chose Greek not only because it furnishes inexhaustible resources to work 
with hut also because, less widely known than Latin, it has the advantage of being 
. . . incomprehensible to a generation less versed in the study of ancient 
Greece. . . . Only, we know neither who this man was, nor what his nationality 
might be, nor even whether he existed or not. Let us suppose that . . . Greek words 
gained currency little by little until, one day, . . . the idea . . . was born . . . that, 
by their own intrinsic virtue, they could serve for advertising. ... I myself would 
like to think that . . . several generations and several nations went into the making 
of that verhal billboard, the Greek monster that entices by surprise. I believe it 
was during the epoch I'm speaking of that the movement began to take shape. . . . 
The age of 'comagenic' hair oil had arrived." Pp. 1229-1230 ("Les Causes du 
triomphe du grec"). [G15a,l] 

"What would a modern Winckelmann say . , . were he confronted hy a product 
from China — something strange, bizarre, contorted in form, intense in color, and 
sometimes so delicate as to he almost evanescent? It is, nevertheless, an example of 
universal beauty. But in order to understand it, the critic, the spectator, must 
effect within himself a mysterious transformation; and by means of a phenomenon 
of the will acting on the imagination, he must learn hy himself to participate in the 
milieu which has given hirth to this strange flowering." Further along, on the same 
page, appear "those mysterious flowers whose deep color enslaves the eye and 
tantalizes it with its shape." Charles Baudelaire, Oeuvres, <ed. Le Dantec (Paris, 
1932),> vol. 2, pp. 144-145 ("Exposition universelle, 1855").-' [G15a,2] 

"In French poetry before Baudelaire, as in the poetry of Europe generally, the 
style and accents of the Orient were never more than a faintly puerile and facti- 
tious game. With Les Fleurs du mal, the strange color is not produced without a 
keen sense of escape. Baudelaire . . . invites himself to absence. ... In making a 
journey, he gives us the feel of . . . unexplored nature, where the traveler parts 
company with himself. . . . Douhtless, he leaves the mind and spirit unchanged; 
but he presents a new vision of his soul. It is tropical, African, black, enslaved. 
Here is the true country, an actual Africa, an authentic Indies." Andre Suares, 
Preface to Charles Baudelaire, Les Fleurs du mal (Paris, 1933), pp. xxv-xxvii. 


Prostitution of space in hashish, where it serves for all that has been. 3 * [G16,2] 

Grandville's masking of nature with the fashions of midcentury — nature under- 
stood as the cosmos, as well as the world of animals and plants — lets history, in 
the guise of fashion, be derived from the eternal cycle of nature. When Grand- 
ville presents a new fan as the "fan of Iris," when the Milky Way appears as an 

"avenue" illuminated at night by gas lamps, when "the moon (a self-portrait)" 
reposes on fashionable velvet cushions instead of on clouds, then history is being 
secularized and drawn into a natural context as relentlessly as it was three hun- 
dred years earlier with allegory. [ G 1 6 , 3 ] 

The planetary fashions of Grandville are so many parodies, drawn by nature, of 
human history. Grandville's harlequinades turn into Blanqui's plaintive ballads. 


"The exhibitions are the only properly modern festivals." Hermann Lotze, Mi- 
krokosmos, vol. 3 (Leipzig, 1864), p. ? [G16.5] 

The world exhibitions were training schools in which the masses, barred from 
consuming, learned empathy with exchange value. "Look at everything; touch 
nothing." [G16.6] 

The entertainment industry refines and multiplies the varieties of reactive behav- 
ior among the masses. In this way, it makes them ripe for the workings of 
advertising. The link between this industry and the world exhibitions is thus well 
established. [G16.7] 

Proposal for urban planning in Paris: "It would he advisable to vary the forms of 
the houses and, as for the districts, to employ different architectural orders, even 
those in no way classical — such as the Gothic, Turkish, Chinese, Egyptian, Bur- 
mese, and so forth." Amedee de Tissot, Paris et Londres compares (Paris, 1830), 
p. 151. — The architecture of future exhibitions! [G16a.l] 

"As long as this unspeakable construction [the Palace of Industry] survives, ... I 
shall take satisfaction in renouncing the title 'man of letters'. . . . Art and indus- 
try! Yes, it was in fact for them alone that, in 1855, this impossible tangle of 
galleries was reserved, this jumble where the poor writers have not even been 
granted six square feet — the space of a grave! Glory to thee, 0 Stationer. . . . 
Mount to the Capitol, 0 Publisher . . . ! Triumph, you artists and industrials, you 
who have had the honors and the profit of a world exhibition, whereas poor litera- 
ture . . ." (pp. v-vi). "A world exhihition for the man of letters, a Crystal Palace 
for the author-modiste!" Whisperings of a scurrilous demon whom Babou, accord- 
ing to his "Lettre a Charles Asselineau," is supposed to have encountered one day 
along the Champs-Elysees. Ilippolyte Babou, Les Payens innocents (Paris, 1858), 
p. xiv. [G16a,2] 

Exhibitions. "Such transitory installations, as a rule, have had no influence on the 
configuration of cities. ... It is otherwise ... in Paris. Precisely in the fact that 
here giant exhibitions could be set up in the middle of town, and that nearly always 
they would leave hehind a monument well suited to the city's general aspect — pre- 

cisely in this, one can recognize the blessing of a great original layout and of a 
continuing tradition of urban planning. Paris could . . . organize even the most 
immense exhibition so as to be . . . accessible from the Place de la Concorde. Along 
the quays leading west from this square, for a distance of kilometers, the curbs 
have heen set back from the river in such a way that very wide lanes are opened, 
which, abundantly planted with rows of trees, make for the loveliest possihle 
exhibition routes." Fritz Stahl, Paris (Berlin <1929>), p. 62. [Gl6a,3] 

[The Collector] 

All these old things have a moral value. 
— Charles Baudelaire 1 

I believe ... in my soul: the Thing. 
—Leon »eubel, Oeuvres (Paris, 1929), p. 193 

Here was the last refuge of those infant prodigies that saw the light of day at the 
time of the world exhibitions : the briefcase with interior lighting, the meter-long 
pocket knife, or the patented umbrella handle with built-in watch and revolver. 
And near the degenerate giant creatures, aborted and broken-down matter. We 
followed the narrow dark corridor to where — between a discount bookstore, in 
which dusty tied-up bundles tell of all sorts of failure, and a shop selling only 
buttons (mother-of-pearl and the kind that in Paris are called de fantairie) — there 
stood a sort of salon. On the pale-colored wallpaper full of figures and busts 
shone a gas lamp. By its light, an old woman sat reading. They say she has been 
there alone for years, and collects sets of teeth "in gold, in wax, and broken." 
Since that day, moreover, we know where Doctor Miracle got the wax out of 
which he f ashioned Olympia. 2 □ Dolls D [ H 1 , 1 ] 

"The crowd throngs to the Passage Vivieime, where people never feel conspicu- 
ous, and deserts the Passage Colbert, where they feel perhaps too conspicuous. 
At a certain point, an attempt was made to entice the crowd back by filling the 
rotunda each evening with harmonious music, which emanated invisibly from 
the windows of a mezzanine. But the crowd came to put its nose in at the door 
and did not enter, suspecting in this novelty a conspiracy against its customs and 
routine pleasures." Le Livre des cent-et-un, vol. 10 (Paris, 1833), p. 58. Fifteen 
years ago, a similar attempt was made — likewise in vain — to boost the <Berlin> 
department store W. Wertheim. Concerts were given in the great arcade that ran 
through it. [Hl,2] 

Never trust what writers say about their own writings. When Zola undertook to 
defend his Tlierese Raqain against hostile critics, he explained that his book was a 
scientific study of the temperaments. His task had been to show, in an example, 

exactly how the sanguine and the nervous temperaments act on one another — to 
the detriment of each. But this explanation could satisfy no one. Nor does it 
explain the admixture of colportage, the bloodthirstiness, the cinematic goriness 
of the action. Which — by no accident — takes place in an arcade. 3 If this book 
really expounds something scientifically, then it's the death of the Paris arcades, 
the decay of a type of architecture. The book's atmosphere is saturated with the 
poisons of this process: its people drop like flies. [Hl,3] 

In 1893, the cocottes were driven from the arcades. [HI, 4] 

Music seems to have setded into these spaces only with their decline, only as the 
orchestras themselves began to seem old-fashioned in comparison to the new 
mechanical music. So that, in fact, these orchestras would just as soon have taken 
refuge there. (The "theatrophone" in the arcades was, in certain respects, the 
forerunner of the gramophone.) Nevertheless, there was music that conformed 
to the spirit of the arcades — a panoramic music, such as can be heard today only 
in old-fashioned genteel concerts like those of the casino orchestra in Monte 
Carlo: the panoramic compositions of <Felicien> David, for example — Le Desert, 
Christoph Colomb, Herculanum. When, in the 1860s (?), an Arab political delega- 
tion came to Paris, the city was very proud to be able to mount a performance of 
Le Desert for them in the great Theatre de l'Opera (?}. [HI, 5] 

"Cineoramas. The Grand Glohe Celeste: a gigantic sphere forty-six meters in di- 
ameter, where you can hear the music of Saint-Saens." Jules Claretie, La Vie a 
Paris 1900 (Paris, 1901), p. 61. D Diorama D [Hl,6] 

Often these inner spaces harbor antiquated trades, and even those that are 
dioroughly up to date will acquire in them something obsolete. They are the site 
of information bureaus and detective agencies, which there, in the gloomy light 
of die upper galleries, follow the trail of the past. In hairdressers' windows, you 
can see the last women with long hair. They have richly undulating masses of 
hair, which are "permanent waves," petrified coiffures. They ought to dedicate 
small votive plaques to those who made a special world of these buildings — to 
Baudelaire and Odilon Redon, whose very name sounds like an all too well- 
turned ringlet. Instead, they have been betrayed and sold, and the head of 
Salome made into an ornament — if that which dreams of the console diere below 
is not the embalmed head of Anna Czyllak. ' And while these things are petrified, 
the masonry of the walls above has become britde. Brittle, too, are 0 Mirrors □ 
<SeeRl,3.> [Hla.l] 

What is decisive in collecting is that the object is detached from all its original 
functions in order to enter into the closest conceivable relation to things of the 
same kind. This relation is die diametric opposite of any utility, and falls into the 
peculiar category of completeness. What is diis "completeness"? It is a grand 
attempt to overcome the wholly irrational character of the object's mere presence 

at hand through its integration into a new, expressly devised historical system: 
the collection. And for the true collector, every single thing in this system be- 
comes an encyclopedia of all knowledge of the epoch, the landscape, the indus- 
try, and the owner from which it comes. It is the deepest enchantment of the 
collector to enclose the particular item within a magic circle, where, as a last 
shudder runs through it (the shudder of being acquired), it turns to stone. Every- 
thing remembered, everything thought, everything conscious becomes socle, 
frame, pedestal, seal of his possession. It must not be assumed that the collector, 
in particular, would find anything strange in the topos hyperonranios — that place 
beyond the heavens which, for Plato, 5 shelters the unchangeable archetypes of 
things. He loses himself, assuredly. But he has the strength to pull himself up 
again by nothing more than a straw; and from out of the sea of fog that envelops 
his senses rises the newly acquired piece, like an island. — Collecting is a form of 
practical memory, and of all the profane manifestations of "nearness" it is the 
most binding. Thus, in a certain sense, the smallest act of political reflection 
makes for an epoch in the antiques business. We construct here an alarm clock 
that rouses the kitsch of the previous century to "assembly." [Hla,2] 

Extinct nature: the shell shop in the arcades, hi "The Pilot's Trials," Strindberg 
tells of "an arcade with brightly lit shops." "Then he went on into the arcade. . . . 
There was every possible kind of shop, but not a soul to be seen, either behind or 
before the counters. After a while he stopped in front of a big window in which 
there was a whole display of shells. As the door was open, he went in. From floor 
to ceiling there were rows of shells of every kind, collected from all the seas of the 
world. No one was in, but there was a ring of tobacco smoke in the air. . . . So he 
began his walk again, following the blue and white carpet. The passage wasn't 
straight but winding, so that you could never see the end of it; and there were 
always fresh shops there, but no people; and the shopkeepers were not to be 
seen." The unfathomability of the moribund arcades is a characteristic motif. 
Strindberg, Marchen (Munich and Berlin, 1917), pp. 52-53, 59. 6 [Hla,3] 

One must make one's way through Les Flenrs du malWith. a sense for how things 
are raised to allegory. The use of uppercase lettering should be followed carefully. 


At the conclusion oiMatiere et memoire, Bergson develops the idea that perception 
is a function of time. If, let us say, we were to live vis-a-vis some things more 
calmly and vis-a-vis others more rapidly, according to a different rhythm, there 
would be nothing "subsistent" for us, but instead everything would happen right 
before our eyes; everything would strike us. But this is the way things are for the 
great collector. They strike him. How he himself pursues and encounters them, 
what changes in the ensemble of items are effected by a newly supervening 
item — all this shows him his affairs in constant flux. Here, the Paris arcades are 
examined as though they were properties in the hand of a collector. (At bottom, 
we may say, the collector lives a piece of dream life. For in the dream, too, the 

rhythm of perception and experience is altered in such a way that everything — 
even the seemingly most neutral — comes to strike us; everything concerns us. In 
order to understand the arcades from the ground up, we sink them into the 
deepest stratum of the dream; we speak of them as though they had struck us.) 


"'ibur understanding of allegory assumes proportions hitherto unknown to you; 
I will note, in passing, that allegory — long an object of our scorn because of 
maladroit painters, but in reality a most spiritual art form, one of the earliest and 
most natural forms of poetry — resumes its legitimate dominion in a mind illumi- 
nated by intoxication." Charles Baudelaire, Les Paradis artificiels (Paris, 1917), 
p. 73/ (On the basis of what follows, it cannot be doubted that Baudelaire indeed 
had allegory and not symbol in mind. The passage is taken from the chapter on 
hashish.) The collector as allegorist. 0 Hashish D [H2,l] 

"The publication <in 1864> oiL'Histoire de la societefranqaise pendant la Revolu- 
tion et sous le Directoire opens the era of the curio — and the word 'curio' should 
not he taken as pejorative. In those days, the historical curio was called a 'relic.'" 
Remy de Gourmont, Le Deuxieme Livre des masques (Paris, 1924), p. 259. This 
passage concerns a work by Edmond and Jules de Goncourt. [H2,2] 

The true method of making things present is to represent them in our space (not 
to represent ourselves in their space). (The collector does just this, and so does 
the anecdote.) Thus represented, the things allow no mediating construction 
from out of "large contexts." The same method applies, in essence, to the consid- 
eration of great things from the past — the cathedral of Chartres, the temple of 
Paestum — when, that is, a favorable prospect presents itself: the method of re- 
ceiving the things into our space. We don't displace our being into theirs; they 
step into our life. [H2,3] 

Fundamentally a very odd fact — that collector's items as such were produced 
industrially. Since when? It would be necessaiy to investigate the various fash- 
ions that governed collecting in the nineteenth century. Characteristic of the 
Biedermeier period (is this also the case in France?) is the mania for cups and 
saucers. "Parents, children, friends, relatives, superiors, and subordinates make 
their feelings known through cups and saucers. The cup is the preferred gift, the 
most popular kind of knickknack for a room. Just as Friedrich Wilhelmlll filled 
his study with pyramids of porcelain cups, the ordinary citizen collected, in the 
cups and saucers of his sideboard, the memory of the most important events, the 
most precious hours, of his life." Max von Boehn, Die Mode im XIX. Jahrhnn- 
dert, vol. 2 (Mimich, 1907), p. 136. [H2,4] 

Possession and having are allied with the tactile, and stand in a certain opposition 
to the optical. Collectors are beings with tactile instincts. Moreover, with the 
recent turn away from naturalism, the primacy of the optical that was determi- 

nate for the previous century has come to an end. □ Flaneur D Hie flaneur optical, 
the collector tactile. 8 [H2,5] 

Broken-down matter: the elevation of the commodity to the status of allegory. 
Allegory and the fetish character of the commodity. [H2,6] 

One may start from the fact that the true collector detaches the object from its 
functional relations. But that is hardly an exhaustive description of this remark- 
able mode of behavior. For isn't this the foundation (to speak with Kant and 
Schopenhauer) of that "disinterested" contemplation by virtue of which the col- 
lector attains to an unei[ualed view of the object — a view which takes in more, 
and other, than that of the profane owner and which we would do best to 
compare to die gaze of the great physiognomist? But how his eye comes to rest 
on the object is a matter elucidated much more sharply through another consid- 
eration. It must be kept in mind that, for the collector, the world is present, and 
indeed ordered, in each of his objects. Ordered, however, according to a surpris- 
ing and, for the profane understanding, incomprehensible connection. This con- 
nection stands to the customary ordering and schematization of things something 
as their arrangement in the dictionary stands to a natural arrangement. We need 
only recall what importance a particular collector attaches not only to his object 
but also to its entire past, whether this concerns the origin and objective charac- 
teristics of the thing or the details of its ostensibly external history: previous 
owners, price of purchase, current value, and so on. All of these — the "objective" 
data together with the other — come together, for the true collector, in every 
single one of his possessions, to form a whole magic encyclopedia, a world order, 
whose outline is the Jkte of his object. Here, therefore, within this circumscribed 
field, we can understand how great physiognomists (and collectors are physiog- 
nomists of the world of things) become interpreters of fate. It suffices to observe 
just one collector as he handles the items in his showcase. No sooner does he 
hold them in his hand than he appears inspired by them and seems to look 
through them into their distance, like an augur. (It would be interesting to study 
the bibliophile as the only type of collector who has not completely withdrawn 
his treasures from their functional context.) [H2,7; H2a,l] 

The great collector Pachinger, Wolfskehl's friend, has put together a collection 
that, in its array of proscribed and damaged objects, rivals the Figdor collection 
in Vienna. He hardly knows any more how things stand in the world; explains to 
his visitors — alongside die most antique implements — die use of pocket handker- 
chiefs, hand mirrors, and the like. It is related of him that, one day, as he was 
crossing the Stachus, he stooped to pick something up. Before him lay an object 
he had been pursuing for weeks: a misprinted streetcar ticket that had been in 
circulation for only a few hours. [H2a,2] 

An apology for the collector ought not to overlook this invective: "Avarice and 
old age, remarks Gui Patin, are always in collusion. With individuals as with 

societies, the need to accumulate is one of the signs of approaching death. This is 
confirmed in the acute stages of preparalysis. There is also the mania for collec- 
tion, known in neurology as 'collectionism.' / From the collection of hairpins to 
the cardboard box bearing the inscription: 'Small bits of string are useless.'" Les 
Sept Pe'clies capitaux (Paris, 1929), pp. 26-27 (Paul Morand, "L'Avarice"). But 
compare collecting done by children! [H2a,3] 

"I am not sure I should have been so thoroughly possessed by this one subject, hut 
for the heaps of fantastic things I had seen huddled together in the curiosity- 
dealer's warehouse. These, crowding on my mind, in connection with the child, 
and gathering round her, as it were, brought her condition palpably before me. I 
had her image, without any effort of imagination, surrounded and heset by every- 
thing that was foreign to its nature, and farthest removed from the sympathies of 
her sex and age. If these helps to my fancy had all been wanting, and I had been 
forced to imagine her in a common chamber, with nothing unusual or uncouth in 
its appearance, it is very probable that I should have been less impressed with her 
strange and solitary state. As it was, she seemed to exist in a kind of allegory." 
Charles Dickens, Der Raritiitenladen (Leipzig, ed. Insel), pp. 18-19. 9 [H2a,4] 

Wiesengrund, in an unpublished essay on The Old Curiosity Shop, by Dickens: 
"Nell's death is decided in the sentence that reads: 'There were some trilles 
there — poor useless things — that she would have liked to take away; but that was 
impossible.'. . . Yet Dickens recognized that the possibility of transition and dia- 
lectical rescue was inherent in this world of things , this lost, rejected world; and he 
expressed it, better than Romantic nature-worship was ever able to do, in the 
powerful allegory of money with which the depiction of the industrial city ends: 
'. . . two old, hattered, smoke-encrusted penny pieces. Who knows but they shone 
as brightly in the eyes of angels, as golden gifts that have been chronicled on 
tombs?'" 10 [H2a,5] 

"Most enthusiasts let themselves be guided by chance in forming their collection, 
like bibliophiles in their browsing. . . . M. Thiers has proceeded otherwise: before 
assembling his collection, he formed it as a whole in his head; he laid out his plan 
in advance, and he has spent thirty years executing it. . . . M. Thiers possesses 
what he wanted to possess. . . . And what was the point? To arrange around him- 
self a miniature of the universe — that is, to gather, within an environment of eighty 
square meters, Rome and Florence, Pompeii and Venice, Dresden and the Hague, 
the Vatican and the Escorial, the British Museum and the Hermitage, the Alham- 
bra and the Summer Palace. . . . And M. Thiers has been able to realize this vast 
project with only modest expenditures made each year over a thirty-year pe- 
riod. . . . Seeking, in particular, to adorn the walls of lus residence with the most 
precious souvenirs of his voyages, M. Thiers had reduced copies made of the most 
famous paintings. . . . And so, on entering his home, you lind yourself immediately 
surrounded by masterpieces created in Italy during the age of Leo X. The wall 
facing the windows is occupied by The Last Judgment, hung between The Dispute 

of the Holy Sacrament and The School of Athens. Titian's Assumption adorns the 
mantelpiece, between The Communion of Saint Jerome and The Transfiguration. 
The Madonna of Saint Sixtus makes a pair with Saint Cecila, and on the pilaster 
are framed the Sibyls of Raphael, between the Sposalizio and the picture repre- 
senting Gregory IX delivering the decretals to a delegate of the Consistory. . . . 
These copies all heing reduced in accordance with the same scale, or nearly so, . . . 
the eye discovers in them, with pleasure, the relative proportions of the originals. 
They are painted in watercolor." Charles Blanc, Le Cabinet de M. Thiers (Paris, 
1871), pp. 16-18. [H3,l] 

"Casimir Perier said one day, while viewing the art collection of an illustrious 
enthusiast . . . : 'All these paintings are very pretty — but they're dormant capi- 
tal.'. . . Today, . . . one could say to Casimir Perier . . . that . . . paintings . . ., 
when they are indeed authentic, that drawings, when recognizahly by the hand of 
a master, . . . sleep a sleep that is restorative and profitable. . . . The . . . sale of 
the curiosities and paintings of Monsieur R. . . . has proven in round figures that 
works of genius possess a value just as solid as the Orleans <Railroad Co.> and a 
little more secure than bonded warehouses." Charles Blanc, Le Tresor de la cu- 
riosite, vol. 2 (Paris, 1858), p. 578. [H3,2] 

The positive countertype to the collector — which also, insofar as it entails the 
liberation of things from the drudgery of being useful, represents the consumma- 
tion of the collector — can be deduced from these words of Marx: "Private prop- 
erty has made us so stupid and inert that an object is ours only when we have it, 
when it exists as capital for us, or when ... we use it." Karl Marx, Der historische 
Materialismus, in Die Friihschriften, ed. Landshut and Mayer (Leipzig < 193 2 >), vol. 
1, p. 299 ("Nationalokonomie und Pbilosopbie"). 11 [H3 a ,l] 

'''All the physical and intellectual senses have heen replaced hy the simple aliena- 
tion of all these senses, the sense of having. . . . (On the category of having, see 
Hess in Tiventy-One Sheets)." Karl Marx, Der historische Materialismus 
(Leipzig), vol. 1, p. 300 ("Nationalokonomie und Philosophic"). 12 [H3a,2] 

"I can, in practice, relate myself humanly to an object only if the ohject relates 
itself humanly to man." Karl Marx, Der historische Materialismus (Leipzig), vol. 
1, p. 300 ("Nationalokonomie und Philosophic"). 13 [H3 a ,3] 

The collections of Alexandre du Sommerard in the holdings of the Musee Cluny. 


The •(uodlibet has something of the genius of both collector and flaneur. 

[H3 a ,5] 

The collector actualizes latent archaic representations of property. These repre- 
sentations may in fact be connected with taboo, as the following remark indi- 

cates: "It . . . is . . . certain that taboo is the primitive form of property. At first 
emotively and 'sincerely,' then as a routine legal process, declaring something 
taboo would have constituted a title. To appropriate to oneself an object is to 
render it sacred and redoubtable to others; it is to make it 'participate' in oneself." 
N. Guterman and H. Lefebvre, La Conscience mystifiee (Paris, 1936), p. 228. 


Passages hy Marx from "Nationalokonomie und Philosophic": "Private property 
has made us so stupid and inert that an object is ours only when we have it." "All 
the physical and intellectual senses . . . have been replaced by the simple aliena- 
tion of all these senses, the sense of having." 1 ' 1 Cited in Hugo Fischer, Karl Marx 
und sein Verhmltnis zu Staat und Wirtschaft (Jena, 1932), p. 64. [H3a,7] 

The ancestors of Balthazar Claes were collectors. [H3a,8] 

Models for Cousin Pons: Sommerard, Sauvageot, Jacaze. [H3a,9] 

The physiological side of collecting is important. In the analysis of this behavior, 
it should not be overlooked that, with the nest-building of birds, collecting ac- 
quires a clear biological function. There is apparently an indication to this effect 
in Vasari's treatise on architecture. Pavlov, too, is supposed to have occupied 
himself with collecting. [H4,l] 

Vasari is supposed to have maintained (in his treatise on architecture?) that 
the term "grotesque" comes from the grottoes in which collectors hoard their 
treasures. [H4,2] 

Collecting is a primal phenomenon of study: the student collects knowledge. 


In elucidating the relation of medieval man to his affairs, Huizinga occasionally 
adduces the literary genre of the "testament": "This literary form can be . . . 
appreciated only by someone who remembers that the people of the Middle Ages 
were, in fact, accustomed to dispose of even the meanest [!] of their possessions 
through a separate and detailed testament. A poor woman bequeathed her Sun- 
day dress and cap to her parish, her bed to her godchild, a fur to her nurse, her 
everyday dress to a beggar woman, and four pounds tournois (a sum which 
constituted her entire fortune), together with an additional dress and cap, to the 
Franciscan friars (Champion, Villon, vol 2, p. 182). Shouldn't we recognize here, 
too, a quite trivial manifestation of the same cast of mind that sets up every case 
of virtue as an eternal example and sees in every customary practice a divinely 
willed ordinance?" J. Huizinga, Herbst des Mittelalters (Munich, 1928), p. 346." 
What strikes one most about this noteworthy passage is that such a relation to 
movables would perhaps no longer be possible in an age of standardized mass 
production. It would follow quite naturally from this to ask whether or not the 

forms of argumentation to which the author alludes, and indeed certain forms of 
Scholastic thought in general (appeal to hereditary authoritary), belong together 
with the forms of production. The collector develops a similar relationship with 
his objects, which are enriched through his knowledge of their origin and their 
duration in history — a relationship that now seems archaic. [H4,4] 

Perhaps the most deeply hidden motive of the person who collects can be de- 
scribed this way: he takes up the struggle against dispersion. Right from the start, 
the great collector is struck by the confusion, by the scatter, in which the things of 
the world are found. It is the same spectacle that so preoccupied the men of the 
Baroque; in particular, the world image of the allegorist caimot be explained 
apart from the passionate, distraught concern with this spectacle. The allegorist 
is, as it were, the polar opposite of the collector. He has given up the attempt to 
elucidate things through research into their properties and relations. He dis- 
lodges things from their context and, from the outset, relies on his profundity to 
illuminate their meaning. The collector, by contrast, brings together what be- 
longs together; by keeping in mind their affinities and their succession in time, he 
can eventually furnish information about his objects. Nevertheless — and this is 
more important than all the differences that may exist between them — in every 
collector hides an allegorist, and in every allegorist a collector. As far as the 
collector is concerned, his collection is never complete; for let him discover just a 
single piece missing, and everything he's collected remains a patchwork, which is 
what things are for allegory from the beginning. On the other hand, the allego- 
rist — for whom objects represent only keywords in a secret dictionary, which will 
make known their meanings to the initiated — precisely the allegorist can never 
have enough of things. With him, one thing is so little capable of taking the place 
of another that no possible reflection suffices to foresee what meaning his profun- 
dity might lay claim to for each one of them.' 6 [H4a,l] 

Animals (birds, ants), children, and old men as collectors. [H4a,2] 

A sort of productive disorder is the canon of the memoir e involontaire, as it is the 
canon of the collector. "And I had already lived long enough so that, for more 
than one of the human beings with whom I had come in contact, I found in 
antipodal regions of my past memories another being to complete the picture. . . . 
In much the same way, when an art lover is shown a panel of an altar screen, he 
remembers in what church, museum, and private collection the other panels are 
dispersed (likewise, he finally succeeds, by following the catalogues of art sales or 
frequenting antique shops, in finding the mate to the object he possesses and 
thereby completing the pair, and so can reconstruct in his mind the predella and 
the entire altar)." Marcel Proust, Le Temps retrouve (Paris), vol. 2, p. 158. 17 The 
memoir e volontaire, on the other hand, is a registry providing the object with a clas- 
sificatory number behind which it disappears. "So now we've been there." ("I've 
had an experience.") How the scatter of allegorical properties (the patchwork) 
relates to this creative disorder is a question calling for further study. [H5,l] 

[The Interior, The Trace] 

"In 1830, Romanticism was gaining the upper hand in literature. It now invaded 
architecture and placarded house facades with a fantastic gothicism, one all too 
often made of pasteboard. It imposed itself on furniture making. 'Allofa sudden,' 
says a reporter on the exhibition of 1834', 'there is boundless enthusiasm for 
strangely shaped furniture. From old chateaux, from furniture warehouses and 
junk shops, it has been dragged out to embellish the salons, which in every other 
respect are modern. . . .' Feeling inspired, furniture manufacturers have been 
prodigal with their 'ogives and machicolations.' You see beds and armoires bris- 
tling with battlements, like thirteenth-century citadels." E. Levasseur, <Histoire 
des classes ouvrieres et de I'industrie en France, de 1789 a 1870 (Paris, 1904), > 

Apropos of a medieval armoire, this interesting remark from Behne". "Movables 
<fumiture> quite clearly developed out of immovables <real estate>." The armoire 
is compared to a "medieval fortress. Just as, in the latter, a tiny dwelling space is 
surrounded in ever-widening rings by walls, ramparts, and moats, forming a 
gigantic outwork, so the contents of the drawers and shelves in the armoire are 
overwhelmed by a mighty outwork." Adolf Behne, Meues Wohnen — M'eues Bauen 

The importance of movable property, as compared with immovable property: 
Here our task is slightly easier. Easier to blaze a way into the heart of things 
abolished or superseded, in order to decipher the contours of the banal as picture 
puzzle — in order to start a concealed William Tell from out of wooded entrails, or 
in order to be able to answer the question, "Where is the bride in this picture?" 
Picture puzzles, as schemata of dreamwork, were long ago discovered by psycho- 
analysis. We, however, with a similar conviction, are less on the trail of the psyche 
than on the track of things. We seek the totemic tree of objects within the thicket 
of primal history. The very last — the topmost — face on the totem pole is that of 

vol. 2, pp. 206-207. 


(Leipzig, 1927), pp. 59, 61-62. 




The confrontation with furniture in Poe. Struggle to awake from the collective 
dream. [11,4] 

How the interior defended itself against gaslight: "Almost all new houses have 
gas today; it burns in the inner courtyards and on the stairs, though it does not 
yet have free admission to the apartments. It has been allowed into the antecham- 
ber and sometimes even into the dining room, but it is not welcome in the 
drawing room. Why not? It fades the wallpaper. That is the only reason I have 
run across, and it carries no weight at all." Du Camp, Paris, vol. 5, p. 309. 


Hessel speaks of the "dreamy epoch of bad taste." Yes, this epoch was wholly 
adapted to the dream, was furnished in dreams. The alternation in styles — 
Gothic, Persian, Renaissance, and so on — signified: that over the interior of the 
middle-class dining room spreads a banquet room of Cesare Borgia's, or that out 
of the boudoir of the mistress a Gothic chapel arises, or that the master's study, in 
its iridescence, is transformed into the chamber of a Persian prince. The photo- 
montage that fixes such images for us corresponds to the most primitive percep- 
tual tendency of these generations. Only gradually have the images among 
which they lived detached themselves and settled on signs, labels, posters, as the 
figures of advertising. [11,6] 

A series of lithographs from 18< — > showed women reclining voluptuously on 
ottomans in a draperied, crepuscular boudoir, and these prints bore inscriptions: 
On the Banks of the Tagus, On the Banks $j the Neva, On the Banks of the Seine, and 
so forth. The Guadalquivir, the Rhone, the Rhine, the Aar, the Tamis — all had 
their turn. That a national costume might have distinguished these female figures 
one from another may be safely doubted. It was up to the legende, the caption 
inscribed beneath them, to conjure a fantasy landscape over the represented 
interiors. [11,7] 

To render the image of those salons where the gaze was enveloped in billowing 
curtains and swollen cushions, where, before the eyes of the guests, full-length 
mirrors disclosed church doors and settees were gondolas upon which gaslight 
from a vitreous globe shone down like the moon. [11,8] 

"We have witnessed the unprecedented — marriages hetween styles that one would 
have believed eternally incompatible: hats of the First Empire or the Restoration 
worn with Louis XV jackets, Directory-style gowns paired with high-heeled ankle 
hoots — and, still better, low-waisted coats worn over high-waisted dresses." John 
Grand-Carteret, Les Elegances de la toilette (Paris), p. xvi. [Ila,l] 

Names of different types of traveling car from the early years of the railroad: 
berlin (closed and open), diligence, furnished coach, unfurnished coach. D Iron 
Construction D [Ila,2] 

"This year, too, spring arrived earlier and more heautiful than ever, so that, to tell 
the truth, we coidd not rightly rememher the existence of winter in these parts, nor 

whether the fireplace was there for any purpose other than supporting on its 
mantel the timepieces antl candelabra that are known to ornament every room 
here; for the true Parisian would rather eat one course less per day than forgo his 
'mantelpiece arrangement.'" Lebende Bilder aus dem modernen Paris, 4 vols. 
(Cologne, 1863-1866), vol. 2, p. 369 ("Ein kaiserliches Familienhild"). [Ila,3] 

Threshold magic. At the entrance to the skating rink, to the pub, to the tennis 
court, to resort locations: penates. The hen that lays the golden praline-eggs, the 
machine that stamps our names on nameplates, slot machines, fortunetelling 
devices, and above all weighing devices (the Delphic gnothi seauton 1 of our day) — 
these guard the threshold. Oddly, such machines don't flourish in the city, but 
rather are a component of excursion sites, of beer gardens in the suburbs. And 
when, in search of a little greenery, one heads for these places on a Sunday 
afternoon, one is turning as well to the mysterious thresholds. Of course, this 
same magic prevails more covertly in the interior of the bourgeois dwelling. 
Chairs beside an entrance, photographs flanking a doorway, are fallen household 
deities, and the violence they must appease grips our hearts even today at each 
ringing of the doorbell. Try, though, to withstand the violence. Alone in an 
apartment, try not to bend to the insistent ringing. You will find it as difficult as 
an exorcism. Like all magic substance, this too is once again reduced at some 
point to sex — in pornography. Around 1830, Paris amused itself with obscene 
lithos that featured sliding doors and windows. These were the Images dites a 
portes et a /metres, by Numa Bassajet. [Ila,4] 

Concerning the dreamy and, if possible, oriental interior: "Everyone here dreams 
of instant fortune; everyone aims to have, at one stroke, what in peaceful and 
industrious times would cost a lifetime of effort. The creations of the poets are full 
of sudden metamorphoses in domestic existence; they all rave about marquises 
and princesses, about the prodigies of the Thousand and One Nights. It is an 
opium trance that has overspread the whole population, and industry is more to 
blame for this than poetry. Industry was responsible for the swindle in the Stock 
Exchange, the exploitation of all things made to serve artificial needs, and the . . . 
dividends." Gutzkow, Briefe aus Paris (Leipzig, 1842>, vol. 1, p. 93. [Ila,5] 

While art seeks out the intimate view, . . . industry marches to the fore." Oc- 
tave Mirbeau, in he Figaro (1889). (See Encyclopedic d' architecture [1889] 

On the exhibition of 1867. "These high galleries, kilometers in length, were of an 
undeniable grandeur. The noise of machinery filled them. And it should not be 
forgotten that, when this exhibition held its famous galas, guests still drove up to 
the festivities in a coach-and-eight. As was usual with rooms at this period, at- 
tempts were made — through furniture-like installations — to prettify these twenty- 
five-meter-high galleries and to relieve the austerity of their design. One stood in 
fear of one's own magnitude." Sigfried Giedion, Bauen in Frankreich (Leipzig and 

p. 92.) 


Berlin, 1928>, p. 43. 


Under the bourgeoisie, cities as well as pieces of furniture retain the character of 
fortifications. "Till now, it was the fortified city which constantly paralyzed town 
planning." Le Corbusier, Urbanume (Paris <1925>), p. 249. 2 [Ha,8] 

The ancient correspondence between house and cabinet acquires a new variant 
through the insertion of glass roundels in cabinet doors. Since when? Were these 
also found in France? [Ila,9] 

The bourgeois pasha in the imagination of contemporaries: Eugene Sue. He had 
a casde in Sologne. There, it was said, he kept a harem filled with women of 
color. After his death, the legend arose that he had been poisoned by the Jesuits. :! 


Gutzkow reports that the exhibition salons were full of oriental scenes calculated 
to arouse enthusiasm for Algiers. [12,2] 

On the ideal of "distinction." "Everything tends toward the flourish, toward the 
curve, toward intricate convolution. What the reader does not perhaps gather at 
first sight, however, is that diis manner of laying and arranging diings also incor- 
porates a setting apart — one that leads us back to the knight. / The carpet in the 
foreground lies at an angle, diagonally. The chairs are likewise arranged at an 
angle, diagonally. Now, diis could be a coincidence. But if we were to meet widi 
this propensity to situate objects at an angle and diagonally in all the dwellings of 
all classes and social strata — as, in fact, we do — then it can be no coincidence. . . . 
In the first place, arranging at an angle enforces a distinction — and this, once 
more, in a quite literal sense. By the obliquity of its position, the object sets itself 
off from the ensemble, as the carpet does here. . . . But the deeper explanation for 
all this is, again, the unconscious retention of a posture of struggle and defense. / 
In order to defend a piece of ground, I place myself expressly on the diagonal, 
because then I have a free view on two sides. It is for this reason that the bastions 
of a fortification are constructed to form salient angles. . . . And doesn't the 
carpet, in this position, recall such a bastion? . . . / Just as the knight, suspecting 
an attack, positions himself crosswise to guard both left and right, so the peace- 
loving burgher, several centuries later, orders his art objects in such a way that 
each one, if only by standing out from all the rest, has a wall and moat surround- 
ing it. He is thus truly a Spiessbiirger, a militant philistine." Adolf Belme, Neues 
Wohnen — Neues Bauen (Leipzig, 1927), pp. 45-48. In elucidating diis point, the 
author remarks half-seriously: "The gendemen who could afford a villa wanted 
to mark their higher standing. What easier way than by borrowing feudal forms, 
knighdy forms?" (ibid., p. 42). More universal is Lukacs' remark that, from the 
perspective of the philosophy of history, it is characteristic of the middle classes 
that their new opponent, the proletariat, should have entered the arena at a 
moment when the old adversary, feudalism, was not yet vanquished. And they 
will never quite have done with feudalism. [12,3] 

Maurice Barres has characterized Proust as "a Persian poet in a concierge's box." 
Could the first person to grapple with the enigma of the nineteenth-century 
interior be anything else? (The citation is in Jacques-Emile Blanche, Mes Modeles 
[Paris, 1929] 7f " [12,4] 

Announcement published in the newspapers: "Notice. — Monsieur Wiertz offers to 
paint a picture free of charge for any lovers of painting who, possessing an original 
Rubens or Raphael, would like to place his work as a pendant beside the work of 
either of these masters." A. J. Wiertz, Oeuvres litteraires (Paris, 1870), p. 335. 


Nineteenth-century domestic interior. The space disguises itself — puts on, like an 
alluring creature, the costumes of moods. The self-satisfied burgher should know 
something of the feeling that the next room might have witnessed the coronation 
of Charlemagne as well as the assassination of Henri rV, the signing of the Treaty 
of Verdun as well as the wedding of Otto and Theophano. In the end, things are 
merely mannequins, and even the great moments of world history are only 
costumes beneath which they exchange glances of complicity with nothingness, 
with the petty and the banal. Such nihilism is the innermost core of bourgeois 
coziness — a mood that in hashish intoxication concentrates to Satanic content- 
ment, satanic knowing, satanic calm, indicating precisely to what extent the 
nineteenth-century interior is itself a stimulus to intoxication and dream. This 
mood involves, furthermore, an aversion to the open air, the (so to speak) Ura- 
nian atmosphere, which throws a new light on the extravagant interior design of 
the period. To live in these interiors was to have woven a dense fabric about 
oneself, to have secluded oneself within a spider's web, in whose toils world 
events hang loosely suspended like so many insect bodies sucked dry. From this 
cavern, one does not like to stir. 5 [12,6] 

During my second experiment with hashish. Staircase in Charlotte Joel's studio. 
I said: "A structure habitable only by wax figures. I could do so much with it 
plastically; Piscator and company can just go pack. Would be possible for me to 
change the lighting scheme with tiny levers. I can transform the Goethe house 
into the Covent Garden opera; can read from it the whole of world history. I see, 
in this space, why I collect colportage images. Can see everything in this room — 
the sons of Charles III and what you will." 6 [I2a,l] 

"The serrated collars and puffed sleeves . . . which were mistakenly thought to he 
the garh of medieval ladies." Jacob Falke, Geschichte des modernen Geschmacks 
(Leipzig, 1866), p. 347. [I2a,2] 

"Since the glittering arcades have been cut through the streets, the Palais-Royal 
has effectively lost out. Some would say: since the times have grown more virtuous. 
What were once small cabinets particuliers of ill repute have now become smoking 

rooms in coffeehouses. Each coffeehouse has a smoking room known as the di- 
van." Gutzkow, Briefe aus Paris (Leipzig, 1842), vol. 1, p. 226. D Arcades D 


"The great Berlin industrial exhibition is full of imposing Renaissance rooms; even 
the ashtrays are in antique style, the curtains have to he secured with halberds, 
and the bull's-eye rules in window and cabinet." 70 Jahre deutsche Mode (1925), 
p. 72. [I2a,4] 

An observation from the year 1837. "In those days, the classical style reigned, 
just as the rococo does today. With a stroke of its magic wand, fashion . . . 
transformed the salon into an atrium, armchairs into curule seats, dresses with 
trains into tunics, drinking glasses into goblets, shoes into buskins, and guitars 
into lyres." Sophie Gay, Der Salon der Fraulein Contet (in Europa: Chronik der 
gebildeten Welt, ed. August Lewald, vol. 1 [Leipzig and Stuttgart, 1837], p. 358). 
Hence the following: "What is the height of embarrassment?" "When you bring 
a harp to a party and no one asks you to play it." This piece of drollery, which 
also illuminates a certain type of interior, probably dates from the First Empire. 


"As to Baudelaire's 'stage properties' — which were no doubt modeled on the 
fashion in interior decoration of his day — they might provide a useful lesson for 
those elegant ladies of the past twenty years, who used to pride themselves that 
not a single 'false note' was to be found in their town houses. They would do well 
to consider, when they contemplate the alleged purity of style which they have 
achieved with such infinite trouble, that a man may be the greatest and most 
artistic of writers, yet describe nothing but beds with 'adjustable curtains' . . . , 
halls like conservatories . . . , beds filled with subtle scents, sofas deep as tombs, 
whatnots loaded with flowers, lamps burning so briefly . . . that the only light 
comes from the coal fire." Marcel Proust, Chroniques (Paris <1927>), pp. 224-225 7 
(the titles of works cited are omitted) . These remarks are important because they 
make it possible to apply to the interior an antinomy formulated with regard to 
museums and town planning — namely, to confront the new style with the mysti- 
cal-nihilistic expressive power of the traditional, the "antiquated." Which of these 
two alternatives Proust would have chosen is revealed not only by this passage, it 
may be added, but by the whole of his work (compare renferme — "closed-up," 
"musty"). [I2a,6] 

Desideratum: the derivation of genre painting. What function did it serve in the 
rooms that had need of it? It was the last stage—harbinger of the fact that soon 
these spaces would no longer, in general, welcome pictures. "Genre painting. . . . 
Conceived in this way, art could not fail to resort to the specialties so suited to the 
marketplace: each artist wants to have his own specialty, from the pastiche of the 
Middle Ages to microscopic painting, from the routines of the bivouac to Paris 
fashions, from horses to dogs. Public taste in this regard does not discrimi- 

nate. . . . The same picture can be copied twenty times without exhausting de- 
mand and, as the vogue prescribes, each well-kept drawing room wants to have 
one of these fashionable furnishings." Wiertz, Oeuvres litteraires <Paiis, 1870>, 
pp. 527-528. [I2a,7] 

Against the armature of glass and iron, upholstery offers resistance with its 
textiles. [13,1] 

One need only study with due exactitude the physiognomy of the homes of great 
collectors. Then one would have the key to the nineteenth-century interior. Just 
as in the former case the objects gradually take possession of the residence, so in 
the latter it is a piece of furniture that would retrieve and assemble the stylistic 
traces of the centuries. D World of Things D [13,2] 

Why does the glance into an unknown window always find a family at a meal, or 
else a solitary man, seated at a table under a hanging lamp, occupied with some 
obscure niggling thing? Such a glance is the germ cell of Kafka's work. [13,3] 

The masquerade of styles, as it unfolds across the nineteenth century, results 
from the fact that relations of dominance become obscured. The holders of 
power in the bourgeoisie no longer necessarily exercise this power in the places 
where they live (as rentiers) , and no longer in direct unmediated forms. The style 
of their residences is their false iimnediacy. Economic alibi in space. Interior alibi 
in time. [13,4] 

"The art would be to be able to feel homesick, even though one is at home. 
Expertness in the use of illusion is required for this." Kierkegaard, Samtliclie 
Werke <properly: Gesammelte Werke>, vol. 4 <Jena, 19 14>, p. 12 <Stages on Life's 
Way>. 8 This is the formula for the interior. [13,5] 

"Inwardness is the historical prison of primordial human nature." Wiesengrund- 
Adorno, Kierkegaard (Tiibingen, 1933), p. 68.'' [13,6] 

Second Empire. "It is tliis epoch that sees the birth of the logical specialization by 
genus and species that still prevails in most homes, and that reserves oak and solid 
walnut for the dining room and study, gilded wood and lacquers for the drawing 
room, marquetry and veneering for the bedroom." Louis Sonolet, La Vie 
parisienne sous le Second Empire (Paris, 1929), p. 251. [13,7] 

"What dominated this conception of furnishing, in a manner so pronounced as to 
epitomize the whole, was the taste for draped fabrics, ample hangings, and the art 
of harmonizing them all in a visual ensemhle." Louis Sonolet, La Vie parisienne 
sous le Second Empire (Paris, 1929), p. 253. [13,8] 

"The drawing rooms of the Second Empire contained ... a piece of furniture quite 
recently invented and today completely extinct: it was the You sat on it 
astride, while leaning hack on upholstered arm-rests and enjoying a cigar." Louis 
Sonolet, La Vie parisienne sous le Second Empire (Paris, 1929), p. 253. [13,9] 

On the "filigree of chimneys" as "fata morgana" of the interior: "Whoever raises 
his eyes to the housetops, with their iron railings tracing the upper edge of the long 
gray boulevard blocks, discovers the variety and inexhaustibility of the concept 
'chimney.' In all degrees of height, breadth, and length, the smokestacks rise from 
their base in the common stone flues; they range from simple clay pipes, oftentimes 
half -broken and stooped with age, and those tin pipes with flat plates or pointed 
caps, ... to revolving chimney cowls artfully perforated like visors or open on one 
side, with hizarre soot-blackened metal flaps. ... It is the . . . tender irony of the 
one single form hy which Paris . . . has been able to preserve the magic of inti- 
macy. ... So it is as if the urhane coexistence . . . that is characteristic of this city 
were to be met with again up there on the rooftops." Joachim von Helmersen, 
"Pariser Kamine," Frankfurter Zeitung, Fehruary 10, 1933. [13,10] 

Wiesengrund cites and comments on a passage from the Diary of a Seducer — a 
passage that he considers the key to Kierkegaard's "entire oeuvre": "Environment 
and setting still have a great influence upon one; there is something ahout them 
which stamps itself firmly and deeply in the memory, or rather upon the whole 
soul, and which is therefore never forgotten. However old I may become, it will 
always he impossible for me to think of Cordelia amid surroundings different from 
this little room. When I come to visit her, the maid admits me to the hall; Cordelia 
herself comes in from her room, and, just as I open the door to enter the living 
room, she opens her door, so that our eyes meet exactly in the doorway. The living 
room is small, comfortable, little more than a cahinet. Although I have now seen it 
from many different viewpoints, the one dearest to me is the view from the sofa. 
She sits there by my side; in front of us stands a round tea table, over which is 
draped a rich tahlecloth. On the tahle stands a lamp shaped like a flower, which 
shoots up vigorously to bear its crown, over which a delicately cut paper shade 
hangs down so lightly that it is never still. The lamp's form reminds one of oriental 
lands; the shade's movement, of mild oriental breezes. The floor is concealed hy a 
carpet woven from a certain kind of osier, which immediately hetrays its foreign 
origin. For the moment, I let the lamp become the keynote of my landscape. I am 
sitting there with her outstretched on the floor, under the lamp's flowering. At 
other times I let the osier rug evoke thoughts of a ship, of an officer's cahin — we 
sail out into the middle of the great ocean. When we sit at a distance from the 
window, we gaze directly into heaven's vast horizon. . . . Cordelia's environment 
must have no foreground, hut only the infinite boldness of far horizons" (Gesam- 
melte Schrif te/i (properly: Werke (Jena, 1911)>, vol. 1, pp. 348-349 [Either /Or]). 
Wiesengrund remarks: "Just as external history is 'reflected' in internal history, 
semblance < Schein> is in the interieur space. Kierkegaard no more discerned the 
element of semhlance in all merely reflected and reflecting intrasuhjective reality 

than he sees through the semblance of the spatial in the image of the interior. But 
here he is exposed by the material. . . . The contents of the interior are mere 
decoration, alienated from the purposes they represent, deprived of their own use 
value, engendered solely by the isolated dwelling-space. . . . The self is over- 
whelmed in its own domain by commodities and their historical essence. Their 
semblance-character is historically-economically produced hy the alienation of 
thing from use value. But in the interior, things do not remain alien. . . . Foreign- 
ness transforms itself from alienated things into expression; mute things speak as 
'symbols.' The ordering of things in the dwelling-space is called 'arrangement.' 
Historically illusory <Geschichtlich scheinhafte) ohjects are arranged in it as the sem- 
blance of unchangeable nature. In the interior, archaic images unfold: the image of 
the flower as that of organic life; the image of the orient as specifically the home- 
land of yearning; the image of the sea as that of eternity itself. For the semblance 
to which the historical hour condemns things is eternal." Theodor Wiesengrund- 
Adorno, Kierkegaard (Tiihingen, 1933), pp. 46-48."' [13 a] 

The bourgeois who came into ascendancy with Louis Philippe sets store by the 
transformation of nature into the interior, hi 1839, a ball is held at the British 
embassy. Two hundred r«se bushes are ordered. "The garden," so runs an eye- 
witness account, "was covered by an awning and had the feel of a drawing room. 
But what a drawing room! The fragrant, well-stocked flower beds had turned 
into enormous jardinieres, the graveled walks had disappeared under sumptuous 
carpets, and in place of the cast-iron benches we found sofas covered in damask 
and silk; a round table held books and albums. From a distance, the strains of an 
orchestra drifted into this colossal boudoir." [14,1] 

Fashion journals of the period contained instructions for preserving bouquets. 


"Like an odalisque upon a shimmering bronze divan, the proud city lies amid 
warm, vine-clad hills in the serpentine valley of the Seine." Friedrich Engels, "Von 
Paris nach Bern," Die neue Zeit, 17, no. 1 (Stuttgart, 1899), p. 10. [14,3] 

The difficulty in reflecting on dwelling: on the one hand, there is something 
age-old — perhaps eternal — to be recognized here, the image of that abode of the 
human being in the maternaJ womb; on the other hand, this motif of primal 
history notwithstanding, we must understand dwelling in its most extreme form 
as a condition of nineteenth-century existence. The originaJ form of all dwelling 
is existence not in the house but in the shell. The shell bears the impression of its 
occupant. In the most extreme instance, the dwelling becomes a shell. The nine- 
teenth century, like no other century, was addicted to dwelling. It conceived the 
residence as a receptacle for the person, and it encased him with all his appurte- 
nances so deeply in the dwelling's interior that one might be reminded of the 
inside of a compass case, where the instrument with all its accessories lies embed- 
ded in deep, usually violet folds of velvet. What didn't the nineteenth century 

invent some sort of casing for! Pocket watches, slippers, egg cups, thermometers, 
playing cards — and, in lieu of cases, there were jackets, carpets, wrappers, and 
covers. The twentieth century, with its porosity and transparency, its tendency 
toward the well-lit and airy, has put an end to dwelling in the old sense. Set off 
against the doll house in the residence of the master builder Solness are the 
"homes for human beings.'" 1 Jugendstil unsettled the world of the shell in a 
radical way. Today this world has disappeared entirely, and dwelling has dimin- 
ished: for the living, through hotel rooms; for the dead, through crematoriums. 


"To dwell" as a transitive verb — as in the notion of "indwelt spaces"; 13 herewith 
an indication of the frenetic topicality concealed in habitual behavior. It has to do 
with fashioning a shell for ourselves. [14,5] 

"From under all the coral branches and bushes, they swam into view; from under 
every table, every chair; from out of the drawers of the old-fashioned cabinets and 
wardrobes that stood within this strange clubroom — in short, from every hand's- 
hreadth of hiding which the spot provided to the smallest of fi sh, they suddenly 
came to life and showed themselves." Friedrich Gerstacker, Die versunkene Stadt 
(Berlin: Neufeld and Henius, 1921), p. 46. [I4a,l] 

From a review of Eugene Sue's J uif errant (Wandering Jew>, criticized for various 
reasons, including the denigration of the Jesuits and the unmanageable ahundance 
of characters who do nothing hut appear and disappear: "A novel is not a place 
one passes through; it is a place one inhabits." Paulin Limayrac, "Du Roman 
actuel et de nos romanciers," Revue des deux mondes, 11, no. 3 (Paris, 1845), 
p. 951. [I4a,2] 

On literary Empire. Nepomucene Lemercier brings onto the stage, under allegori- 
cal names, the Monarchy, the Church, the Aristocracy, the Demagogues, the Em- 
pire, the Police, Literature, and the Coalition of European powers. His artistic 
means: "the fantastic applied emhlematically." His maxim: "Allusions are my 
weapons; allegory, my buckler." Nepomucene Lemercier, Suite de la Panhy- 
pocrisiade, ou he Spectacle infernal du dix-neuvieme siecle (Paris, 1832), pp. ix, 
vii. [I4a,3] 

From the "Expose preliminaire" to Lemercier's Lampelie et Daguerre: "A short 
preamble is necessary to introduce my audience to the compositional strategy of 
this poem, whose suhject is praise for the discovery made by the illustrious artist 
M. Daguerre; this is a discovery of equal interest to the Academy of Science and 
the Academy of Fine Arts, for it concerns the study of drawing as much as the 
study of physics. . . . On the occasion of such an homage, I would like to see a new 
invention in poetry applied to this extraordinary discovery. Wc know that ancient 
mythology . . . explained natural phenomena by symbolic beings, active repre- 
sentations of the particular principles embodied in things. . . . Modern imitations 

have, up to now, borrowed only the forms of classical poetry; I am endeavoring to 
appropriate for us the principle and the substance. The tendency of the versifiers 
of our century is to reduce the art of the muses to practical and trivial realities, 
easily comprehensible hy the average person. This is not progress but decadence. 
The original enthusiasm of the ancients, hy contrast, tended to elevate the human 
intelligence hy initiating it into those secrets of nature revealed by the elegantly 
ideal fahles. ... It is not without encouragement that I lay bare for yon the foun- 
dations of my theory, which I have applied ... to Newtonian philosophy in my 
Atlantiade. The learned geometer Lagrange has been so generous as to voice ap- 
proval of my attempt to create for our modern muses that great rarity: a theoso- 
phy . . . conforming to acquired knowledge." Nepomucene Lemercier, Sur la 
Decouverte de I'ingenieux peintre du diorama: Seance publique annuelle des cinq 
academies de jeudi 2 mai 1839 (Paris, 1839), pp. 21-23. [I4a,4] 

On the illusionistic painting of the Juste Milieu: l,i "The painter must ... be a good 
dramatist, a good costumer, and a skillful director. . . . The public ... is much 
more interested in the subject than in the artistic qualities. 'Isn't the most difficult 
thing the blending of colors? — No, responds a connoisseur, it's getting the fish's 
scales right. Such was the idea of aesthetic creation among professors, lawyers, 
doctors; everywhere one admired the miracle of Irompe-l'oeil. Any minimally 
successful imitation would garner praise.'" Gisela Freund, "La Photographie dn 
point de vue sociologique" (Manuscript, p. 102). The quotation is from Jules 
Breton, /Vos peintres du siecle, p. 41. [15,1] 

Plush — the material in which traces are left especially easily. [15,2] 

Furthering the fashion in knickknacks are the advances in metallurgy, which has 
its origins in the First Empire. "During this period, groups of cupids and hacchan- 
tes appeared for the first time. . . . Today, art owns a shop and displays the mar- 
vels of its creations on shelves of gold or crystal, whereas in those days 
masterpieces of statuary, reduced in precise proportion, were sold at a discount. 
The Three Graces of Canova found a place in the houdoir, while the Bacchantes 
and the Faun of Pradier had the honors of the hridal chamber." Edouard Fou- 
caud, Paris inventeur: Physiologie de Vindustriefranqaise (Paris, 1844), pp. 196- 
197. [15,3] 

"The science of the poster . . . has attained that rare degree of perfection at which 
skill turns into art. And here I am not speaking of those extraordinary placards 
... on which experts in calligraphy . . . undertake to represent Napoleon on 
horsehack hy an ingenious combination of lines in which the course of his history 
is simultaneously narrated and depicted. No, I shall confine myself to ordinary 
posters. Just see how far these have heen able to push the eloquence of typo- 
graphy, the seductions of the vignette, the fascinations of color, hy using the most 
varied and brilliant of hues to lend perfidious support to the ruses of the publish- 

ers!" Victor Fournel, Ce qu'on voit dans les rues de Paris (Paris, 1858), pp. 293- 
294 ("Enseignes et af fiches"). [15,4] 

Interior of Alphonse Karr's apartment: "He lives like no one else. These days he's 
on the sixth or seventh floor above the Rue Vivienne. The Rue Vivienne for an 
artist! His apartment is hung in black; he has windowpanes of violet or white 
frosted glass. He has neither tables nor chairs (at most, a single chair for excep- 
tional visitors), and he sleeps on a divan — fully dressed, I'm told. He lives like a 
Turk, on cushions, and writes sitting on the fl oor. . . . His walls are decorated with 
various old things . . . ; Chinese vases, death-heads, fencer's foils, and tobacco 
pipes ornament every corner. For a servant, he has a mulatto whom he outfits in 
scarlet from head to toe." Jules Lecomte, Les Lettres de Van Engelgom, ed. Al- 
meras (Paris, 1925), pp. 63-64. [15,5] 

From Daumier's Croquis pris au Saion (Sketches Made at the Salon>. A solitary 
art-lover indicating a picture on which two miserable poplars are represented in a 
flat landscape: "What society could be as degenerate and corrupt as ours? . . . 
Everyone looks at pictures of more or less monstrous scenes, but no one stops 
before an image of beautiful and pure nature." [I5a,l] 

On the occasion of a murder case in London which turned on the discovery of a 
sack containing the victim's body parts, together with remnants of clothing; from 
the latter, the police were able to draw certain conclusions. '"So many things in a 
minuet!' a celebrated dancer used to say. So many things in an overcoat! — when 
circumstances and men make it speak. You will say it's a bit much to expect a 
person, each time he acquires a topcoat, to consider that one day it may serve him 
as a winding sheet. I admit that my suppositions are not exactly rose-colored. But, 
I repeat, . . . the week's events have been doleful." H. de Pene, Paris intime 

Furniture at the time of the Restoration: "sofas, divans, ottomans, love seats, 
recliners, settees." Jacques Robiquet, L'4rt et le gout sous la Restauration (Paris, 

"We have already said . . . that humanity is regressing to the state of cave dweller, 
and so on — but that it is regressing in an estranged, malignant form. The savage in 
his cave . . . feels ... at home there. . . . But the basement apartment of the poor 
man is a hostile dwelling, 'an alien, restraining power, which gives itself up to him 
only insofar as he gives up to it his blood and sweat. ' Such a dwelling can never feel 
like home, a place where he might at last exclaim, 'Here I am at home!' Instead, 
the poor man finds himself in someone else's home, . . . someone who daily lies in 
wait for him and throws him out if he does not pay his rent. He is also aware of the 
contrast in quality between his dwelling and a human dwelling — a residence in that 
other world, the heaven of wealth." Karl Marx, Der historische Materialismus, 

(Paris, 1859), p. 236. 


1928), p. 202. 


ed. Landshut and Mayer (Leipzig <1932>), vol. 1, p. 325 ("Nationalokonomie und 
Philosophic"). 1 ' 1 [I5a,4] 

Valery on Poe. He underlines the American writer's incomparable insight into the 
conditions and effects of literary work in general: "What distinguishes a truly 
general phenomenon is its fertility. ... It is therefore not surprising that Poe, 
possessing so effective and sure a method, became the inventor of several different 
literary forms — that he provided the first . . . examples of the scientific tale, the 
modern cosmogonic poem, the detective novel, the literature of morbid psycho- 
logical states." Valery, "Introduction" to Baudelaire, Les Fleurs du mal <Paris, 
1926>, p. xx. 15 [I5a,5] 

Iii the following description of a Parisian salon, Gautier gives drastic expression 
to the integration of the individual into the interior: "The eye, entranced, is led to 
the groups of ladies who, fluttering their fans, listen to the talkers half-reclining. 
Their eyes are sparkling like diamonds; their shoulders glisten like satin; and 
their lips open up like flowers." (Artificial things come forth!) Paris et les Parisiens 
mix XIX siecle (Paris, 1856), p. iv (Theophile Gautier, "Introduction"). [16,1] 

Balzac's interior decorating in the rather ill-fated property Les Jardies: 10 "This 
house . . . was one of the romances on which M. de Balzac worked hardest 
during his life, but he was never able to finish it. . . . 'On these patient walls,' as 
M. Gozlan has said, 'there were charcoal inscriptions to this effect: "Here a facing 
in Parian marble"; "Here a cedar stylobate"; "Here a ceiling painted by Eugene 
Delacroix"; "Here a fireplace in cipolin marble.'"" Alfred Nettement, Histoire de 
la litterature frangaise sous le gouvernement de juillet (Paris, 1859), vol. 2, pp. 266- 
267. [16,2] 

Development of "The Interior" chapter: entry of the prop into film. [16,3] 

E. R. Curtius cites the following passage from Balzac's Petits Bourgeois: "The 
hideous unbridled speculation that lowers, year by year, the height of the ceilings, 
that fits a whole apartment into the space formerly occupied by a drawing room 
and declares war on the garden, will not fail to have an influence on Parisian 
morals. Soon it will become necessaiy to live more outside the house than within 
it." Ernst Robert Curtius, Balzac (Bonn, 1923), p. 28. Increasing importance of 
the streets, for various reasons. [16,4] 

Perhaps there is a connection between the shrinking of residential space and the 
elaborate furnishing of the interior. Regarding the first, Balzac makes some telling 
observations: "Small pictures alone are in demand because large ones can no 
longer be hung. Soon it will be a formidable problem to house one's library. . . . 
One can no longer find space for provisions of any sort. Hence, one buys things 
that are not calculated to wear well. The shirts and the books won't last, so there 

you are. The durability of products is disappearing on all sides.'" Ernst Robert 
Curtius, Balzac (Bonn, 1923), pp. 28-29. [16,5] 

"Sunsets cast their glowing colors on the walls of dining room and drawing room, 
filtering softly through lovely hangings or intricate high windows with mullioned 
panes. All the furniture is immense, fantastic, strange, armed with locks and 
secrets like all civilized souls. Mirrors, metals, fabrics, pottery, and works of the 
goldsmith's art play a mute mysterious symphony for the eye." Charles Baude- 
laire, he Spleende Paris, ed. R. Simon (Paris), p. 27 ("L'Invitation au voyage"). 17 


Etymology of the word "comfort." "In English, it used to mean consolation ('Com- 
forter' is the epithet applied to the Holy Spirit). Then the sense became, instead, 
ivell-being. Today, in all languages of the world, the word designates nothing more 
than rational convenience." Wladimir Weidle, Les Abeilles d'Aristee (Paris 
<1936>), p. 175 ("L'Agonie de Part"). [I6a,2] 

"The artist-midinettes ... no longer occupy rooms; rather, they live in studios. 
(More and more, you hear everyplace of habitation called a 'studio,' as if people 
were more and more becoming artists or students.)" Henri Polles, "L'Art du com- 
merce," Vendredi, February 12, 1937. [I6a,3] 

Multiplication of traces through the modem administrative apparatus. Balzac 
draws attention to this: "Do your utmost, hapless Frenchwomen, to remain 
unknown, to weave the very least little romance in the midst of a civilization 
which takes note, on public squares, of the hour when every hackney cab comes 
and goes; which counts every letter and stamps them twice, at the exact time they 
are posted and at the time they are delivered; which numbers the houses . . . ; 
which ere long will have every acre of land, down to the smallest holdings . . . , 
laid down on the broad sheets of a survey — a giant's task, by command of a 
giant." Balzac, Modeste Mignon, ]t cited in Regis Messac, Le "Detective Novel" <et 
I'injiuence de la pensee scientifique) (Paris, 1929), p. 461. [I6a,4] 

"Victor Hugo works standing up, and, since he cannot find a suitable antique to 
serve as his desk, he writes on a stack of stools and large books which is covered 
with a carpet. It is on the Bible, it is on the Nuremberg Chronicles, that the poet 
leans and spreads his paper." Louis Llhach, Les Contemporains (Paris, 1833), 
cited in Raymond Escholier, Victor Hugo raconte par ceux qui Vont vu (Paris, 
1931), p. 352. [17, 1] 

The Louis Philippe style: "The belly overspreads everything, even the time- 
pieces." [17,2] 

There is an apocalyptic interior — a complement, as it were, of the bourgeois 
interior at midcentury. It is to be found with Victor Hugo. He writes of spiritual- 

istic manifestations: "I have been checked for a moment in my miserable human 
amour-propre by actual revelation, coming to throw around my little miner's lamp 
a streak of lightning and of meteor." In Les Contemplations, he writes: 

We listen for any sounds in these dismal empty spaces; 
Wandering through the shadows, we listen to the breath 

That makes the darkness shudder; 
And now and then, lost in unfathomable nights, 
We see lit up by mighty lights 

The window of eternity. 

(Cited in Claudius Grillet, Victor Hugo spirite (Lyons and Paris, 1929>, pp. 52, 
22.) ' ' ' [17,3] 

Lodgings around 1860: "The apartment . . . was situated on the Rue d'Anjou. It 
was decorated . . . with carpets, door curtains, fringed valances, double draper- 
ies, so that you would think the Stone Age had been succeeded hy an Age of 
Hangings." Louise Weiss, Souvenirs cl'iuie enfance republicaine (Paris <1937>), 
p. 212. [17,4] 

The relation of the Jugendstil interior to its predecessors comes down to the fact 
that the bourgeois conceals bis alibi in history with a still more remote alibi in 
natural history (specifically in the realm of plants). [17,5] 

The etuis, dust covers, sheaths with which the bourgeois household of the pre- 
ceding century encased its utensils were so many measures taken to capture and 
preserve traces. [17,6] 

On the history of the domestic interior. The residential character of the rooms in 
the early factories, though disconcerting and inexpedient, adds this homely 
touch: that within these spaces one can imagine the factory owner as a quaint 
figurine in a landscape of machines, dreaming not only of his own but of their 
future greatness. With the dissociation of the proprietor from the workplace, this 
characteristic of factory buildings disappears. Capital alienates the employer, too, 
from his means of production, and the dream of their future greatness is finished. 
Tbis alienation process culminates in the emergence of the private home. 


"During the first decades of the nineteenth century, furniture and the objects that 
surrounded us for use and pleasure were relatively simple and durable, and ac- 
corded with the needs of hoth the lower and the upper strata. This resulted in 
people's attachment, as they grew up, to the objects of their surroundings. . . . The 
differentiation of objects has broken down this situation in three different 
ways. . . . First, the sheer quantity of very specifically formed ohjects make a close 
. . . relationship to each of them more difficult. . . . This is expressed ... in the 
housewife's complaint that the care of the household becomes ceremonial fetish- 
ism. . . . This concurrent differentiation has the same effect as consecutive differ- 

entiation. Changes in fashion disrupt that . . . process of . . . assimilation between 
subject and object. . . . [In the third place, tbere is] the multitude of styles that 
confronts us when we view the objects that surround us." Georg Simmel, Philoso- 

On the theory of the trace. To "the Harbor-Master, . . . [as] a sort of . . . deputy- 
Neptune for the circumambient seas, ... I was, in common with the other sea- 
men of the port, merely a subject for official writing, filling up of forms with all 
the artificial superiority of a man of pen and ink to the men who grapple with 
realities outside the consecrated walls of official buildings. What ghosts we must 
have been to him! Mere symbols to juggle with in books and heavy registers, 
without brains and muscles and perplexities; something hardly useful and decid- 
edly inferior." Joseph Conrad, Die Schattenlinie (Berlin <1926>), p. 51. 20 (Compare 
with the Rousseau passage <cited belowx) [I7a,3] 

On the theory of the trace. Practice is eliminated from the productive process by 
machinery. In the process of administration, something analogous occurs with 
heightened organization. Knowledge of human nature, such as the senior em- 
ployee could acquire through practice, ceases to be decisive. This can be seen 
when one compares Conrad's observations in "The Shadow-Line" with a pas- 
sage from Les Confessions. [18,1] 

On the theory of the trace: administration in the eighteenth century. As secretary 
to the French embassy in Venice, Rousseau had abolished the tax on passports 
for the French. "As soon as the news got around that I had reformed the passport 
tax, my only applicants were crowds of pretended Frenchmen who claimed in 
abominable accents to be either from Provence, Picardy, or Burgundy. As I have 
a fairly good ear, I was not easily fooled, and I doubt whether a single Italian 
cheated me out of my sequin, or a single Frenchmen paid it." Jean Jacques Rous- 
seau, Les Confessions, ed. Hilsum (Paris < 1 9 3 1 >) , vol. 2, p. 137. 21 [18,2] 

Baudelaire, in the introduction to his translation of Poe's "Philosophy of Furni- 
ture," which originally appeared in Octoher 1852 in he Magasin des families: 
"Who among us, in his idle hours, has not taken a delicious pleasure in construct- 
ing for himself a model apartment, a dream house, a house of dreams?" Charles 
Baudelaire, Oeuvres completes, ed. Crepet, Histoires grotesques et serieuses par 

phiedes Geldes (Leipzig, 1900), pp. 491-494. 19 


Poe (Paris, 1937), p. 304. 




For it pleases me, all for your sake, to row 
My own oars here on my own sea, 
And to soar heavenward by a strange avenue, 
Singing you the unsung praises of Death. 

— Pieixe Ronsard, "Hymne de la Mort," A Louys dcs Masures 

"Baudelaire's problem . . . must have . . . posed itself in these terms: 'How to he a 
great poet, but neither a Lamartine nor a Hugo nor a Musset.' I do not say that 
these words were consciously formulated, but they must have heen latent in 
Baudelaire's mind; they even constituted what was the essential Baudelaire. They 
were his raison d'etat. . . . Baudelaire considered Victor Hugo; and it is not impos- 
sible to imagine what he thought of him. . . . Everything that might scandalize, and 
thereby instruct and guide a pitiless young observer in the way of his own future 
art, . . . Baudelaire must have recorded in his mind, distinguishing the admiration 
forced upon him by Hugo's wonderful gifts from the impurities, the impru- 
dences, . . . that is to say, the chances for life and fame that so great an artist left 
hehind him to he gleaned." Paul Valery, Introduction (Charles Baudelaire, Les 
Fleurs dumal, with an introduction by Paul Valery [Paris <1926>], pp. x, xii, xiv). 2 
Prohlem of the poncif. :i [ Jl , 1] 

"For a few years before the Revolution of 1848, everyone is hesitating between a 
pure art ani a social art, and it is only well after 1852 that I 'art pour Vart gains the 
upper hand." C. L. de Liefde, Le Saint-Simonisme dans la poesie franqaise entre 

Leconte de Lisle, in the preface to his Poemes et poesies of 1855: "The hymns and 
odes inspired by steam power and electric telegraphy leave me cold." Cited in 
C. L. de Liefde, Le Saint-Simonisme dans la poesie franqaise entre 1825 et 1865, 

1825 et 1865 (Haarlem, 1927>, p. 180. 


p. 179. 


Baudelaire's "Les Bonnes Soeurs" <The Kind Sisters> may be compared with the 
Saint-Simonian poem "La Rue" <The Street), by Savinien Lapointe, shoemaker. 

Charles Baudelaire, 1855. Photo by Nadar. Musee d'Orsay, Paris; photo copyright 
© RMN. 

The latter is concerned only with prostitution and, at the end, evokes memories 
the youth of the fallen young women: 

Oh! Do not seek to know all that debauchery does 

To wither the flowers and mow them down; 

In its working, it is premature as death 

And will make you old despite your eighteen years. 

Have pity on them! Pity! 

When on the corner you should knock against them, 
Their angelic f aces bathed in the glow of good recalled. 

Olinde Rodrigues, Poesies sociales des ouvriers (Paris, 1841), pp. 201, 203. 


Dates. Baudelaire's first letter to Wagner: February 17, 1 860. Wagner's concerts 
in Paris: February 1 and 8, 1860. Paris premiere of Tannhmuser: March 13, 1861. 
When was Baudelaire's article in La Revue europeenne? 4 [ Jl,5] 

Baudelaire planned "an enormous work on the peintres des moeurs (painters of 
manners)." Crepet, in this connection, cites his statement: "Images — my great, my 
primitive passion." 5 Jacques Crepet, "Miettes baudelairiennes," Mercure de 
France, 46th year, vol. 262, no. 894, pp. 531-532. [ Jl,6] 

"Baudelaire . . .can still write, in 1852, in the preface to Dupont's Chansons: 'Art 
was thereafter inseparable from morality and utility. ' And he speaks there of the 
'puerile Utopia of the school of art for art's safce.' 6 . . . Nevertheless, he changes 
his mind soon after 1852. This conception of social art may perhaps be explained 
by his youthful relations. Dupont was his friend at the moment when Baudelaire, 
'almost fanatically republican under the monarchy,' was meditating a realistic 
and communicatory poetry." C. L. de Liefde, he Saint-Simonisme dans la poesie 
franqaise entre 1825 et 1865 <Haarlem, 1927>, p. 115. [Jla,l] 

Baudelaire soon forgot the February Revolution. 7 Telling evidence of this fact has 
heen published hy Jacques Crepet, in "Miettes baudelairiennes" <Baudelairean 
Morsels) (Mercure de France, vol. 262, no. 894, p. 525), in the form of a review of 
the Histoire de Neuilly et de ses chateaux, by the abbe Bellanger, a review which 
Baudelaire probably composed at the recfuest of his friend the lawyer Ancelle, and 
which at the time presumably appeared in the press. There Baudelaire speaks of 
the history of the place "from Roman times to the terrible days of February, when 
the chateau was the theater and spoil of the most ignoble passions, of orgy and 
destruction." [Jla,2] 

Nadar describes the outfi t worn by Baudelaire, who is encountered in the vicinity 
of his residence <of 1843-1845), the Hotel Pimodan. "Black trousers drawn well 
above his polished hoots; a hlue workman's blouse, stiff in its new folds; his hlack 
hair, naturally curly, worn long — his only coiffure; bright linen, strictly without 
starch; a faint moustache under his nose and a bit of beard on his chin; rose-col- 
ored gloves, quite new. . . . Thus arrayed and hatless, Baudelaire walked ahout 
his quartier of the city at an uneven pace, hoth nervous and languid, like a cat, 
choosing each stone of the pavement as if he had to avoid crushing an egg." Cited 
in Firmin Maillard, La Cite des intellectueh (Paris <1905>), p. 362. [ Jla,3] 

Baudelaire — after his enforced sea voyage 8 — was a well-traveled man. [Jla,4] 

Baudelaire to Poulet-Malassis, on January 8, 1860, after a visit from Meryon: 
"After he left me, I wondered how it was that I, who have always had the mind and 
the nerves to go mad, have never actually gone mad. In all seriousness, I gave 
heaven a Pharisee's thanks for this." 9 Cited in Gustave Geffroy, Charles Meryon 
(Paris, 1926), p. 128. [ J la, 5] 

From the <eighth> section of Baudelaire's "Salon de 1859." There one fi nds, apro- 
pos of Meryon, this phrase: "the profound and complex charm of a capital city 
which has grown old and worn in the glories and tribulations of life." A little 
further on: "I have rarely seen the natural solemnity of an immense city more 
poetically reproduced. Those majestic accumulations of stone; those spires 'whose 
fingers point to heaven'; those obelisks of industry, spewing forth their conglom- 
erations of smoke against the firmament; those prodigies of scaffolding 'round 
buildings under repair, applying their openwork architecture, so paradoxically 
beautiful, upon architecture's solid body; that tumultuous sky, charged with an- 
ger and spite; those limitless perspectives, only increased by the thought of all the 
drama they contain; — he forgot not one of the complex elements which go to make 
up the painful and glorious decor of civiJization. . . . But a cruel demon has 
touched M. Meryon's brain. . . . And from that moment we have never ceased 
waiting anxiously for some consoling news of this singular naval officer who in one 
short day turned into a mighty artist, and who bade farewell to the ocean's solemn 
adventures in order to paint the gloomy majesty of this most disquieting of capi- 
tals." 10 Cited in Gustave Geffroy, Charles Meryon (Paris, 1926), pp. 125-126. 


The editor Delatre conceived a plan to publish an album of Meryon's etchings with 
text by Baudelaire. The plan fell through; but it had already been ruined for 
Baudelaire when Meryon demanded, instead of a text suited to the poet, a pedan- 
tic explication of the pictured monuments. Baudelaire complains of the matter in 
his letter of February 16, 1860, to Poulet-Malassis. [J2,2] 

Meryon placed these lines under his etching Le Pont-ISeuf: 

Here lies the exact likeness 
Of the late Pont-Neuf, 
All newly refurbished 
Per recent ordinance. 
O learned doctors, 
Skillful surgeons, 
Why not do for us 

What's been done f or this stone bridge? 

According to Geffroy — who evidently takes them from another version of the etch- 
ing — the last two lines are: "Will tell why renovations / Have been forced on this 
stone bridge." Gustave Geffroy, Charles Meryon (Paris, 1926), p. 59. [J2,3] 

The Pont-Neuf. Etching by Charles Meryon, 1853-1854. SeeJ2,3. 

Bizarre features on plates hy Meryon. "The Rue cles Chantres": squarely in the 
foreground, affixed at eye-level on the wall of what would seem to be a nearly 
windowless house, is a poster hearing the words "Sea Baths." <See Geffroy, Char- 
les Meryon, p. 144. > — "The College Henry IV," about which Geffroy writes: "All 
around the school, the gardens, and neighboring houses, the space is empty, and 
suddenly Meryon hegins to fill it with a landscape of mountain and sea, replacing 
the ocean of Paris . The sails and masts of a ship appear, some flocks of sea birds 
are taking wing, and this phantasmagoria gathers around the most rigorous de- 
sign, the tall buildings of the school regularly pierced by windows, the courtyard 
planted with trees, . . . and the surrounding houses, with their dark rooftops, 
crowded chimneys, and blank facades" (Geffroy, Charles Meryon, p. 151). — "The 
Admiralty": in the clouds a troop of horses, chariots, and dolphins advances upon 
the ministry, ships and sea serpents are not lacking, and several human-shaped 
creatures are to he seen in the multitude. "This will be . . . the last view of Paris 
engraved hy Meryon. He bids adieu to the city where he suffered that onslaught of 
dreams at the house, stern as a fortress, in which he did service as a young ensign, 
in the springtime of his life, when he was just setting out for the distant isles" 
(Geffroy, Charles Meryon, p. 161). 0 Flaneur D [J2a,l] 

"Meryon 's execution is incomparable, Beraldi says. The most striking thing is the 
beauty and dignity of his firm, decisive line. Those line straight edges are said to be 

executed thus: the plate is set upright on an easel, the etching needle is held at 
arm's length (like a rapier), and the hand moves slowly from top to bottom." 
R. Castinelli, "Charles Meryon," Introduction to Charles Meryon, Eaux-fortes 
sur Paris, p. iii. [J2a,2] 

Meryon produced his twenty-two etchings of Paris between 1852 and 1854. 


When did the "Paris article" <article de Paris > first appear? [J2a,4] 

What Baudelaire says about a drawing by Daumier on the subject of cholera 
could also apply to certain engravings by Meryon: "True to its ironic custom in 
times of great calamity and political upheaval, the sky of Paris is superb; it is 
quite white and incandescent with heat." Charles Baudelaire, Les Dessins de 
Daumier (Paris <1924>), p. 13. <SeeJ52a,4.> D Dust, Boredom D [J2a,5] 

"The splenetic cupola of the sky" — a phrase from Charles Baudelaire, he Spleen 
de Paris, ed. Simon (Paris), p. 8 ("Chacun sa chimere"). 11 [J2a,6] 

"The philosophical and literary Catholicism ... of Baudelaire had need of an 
intermediate position . . . where it could take up its abode between God and the 
Devil. The title Les Limbes <Limbo> marked this geographic determination of 
Baudelaire's poems, making it possible to understand better the order Baudelaire 
wanted to establish among them, which is the order of a journey — more exactly, a 
fourth journey after Dante's three journeys in Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso. 
The poet of Florence lived on in the poet of Paris." Albert Thibaudet, Histoire de 
la litteraturef rancaise de 1789 a nos jours (Paris <1936>), p. 325. 12 [ J3,l] 

On the allegorical element. "Dickens . . . mentions, among the coffee shops into 
which he crept in those wretched days, one in St. Martin's Lane, 'of which I only 
recollect that it stood near the church, and that in the door there was an oval glass 
plate with coffee room painted on it, addressed towards the street. If I ever find 
myself in a very different kind of coffee room now, but where there is such an 
inscription on glass, and read it backwards on the wrong side, MOOR eeffoc (as I 
often used to do then in a dismal reverie), a shock goes through my blood.' That 
wild word, 'Moor Eeffoc,' is the motto of all effective realism." G. K. Chesterton, 
Dickens (series entitled Vie des hommes illustres, no. 9), trans, from the English by 
Laurent and Martin-Dupont (Paris, 1927), p. 32. 13 [J3,2] 

Dickens and stenography: "He describes how, after he had learnt the whole exact 
alphabet, 'there then appeared a procession of new horrors, called arbitrary 
characters — the most despotic characters I have ever known; who insisted, for 
instance, that a thing like the beginning of a cobweb meant "expectation ," and that 
a pen-and-ink skyrocket stood for "disadvantageous."' He concludes, Tt was al- 
most hearthreaking.' But it is significant that somebody else, a colleague of his, 

concluded, 'There never ivas such a shorthand writer.'" G. K. Chesterton, Dick- 
ens (series entitled Vie des hommes illustres, no. 9), trans. Laurent and Martin- 
Dupont (Paris, 1927), pp. 40-41. 14 [J3,3] 

Valery (Introduction to Les Fleurs du mal [Paris, 1926], p. xxv) speaks of a com- 
bination of "eternity and intimacy" in Baudelaire. 13 [J3>4] 

From the article by Barbey d'Aurevilly in Articles justicatifs pour Charles Baude- 
laire, auteur des Fleurs du mal (Paris, 1857), a hooklet of thirty-three pages, with 
other contributions by Dulamon, Asselineau, and Thierry, which was printed at 
Baudelaire's expense for the trial: lf ' "The poet, terrifying and terrified, wanted us 
to inhale the abomination of that dread basket that he carries, pale canephore, on 
his head bristling with horror. . . . His talent ... is itself a flower of evil cultivated 
in the hothouses of Decadence. . . . There is something of Dante in the author of 
Les Fleurs du mal, but it is the Dante of an epoch in decline, an atheist and 
modernist Dante, a Dante come after Voltaire." Cited in W. T. Bandy, Baudelaire 
Judged by His Contemporaries (New York <1933>), pp. 167-168 <collection of 
texts in French) . [ J3a,l] 

Gautier's note on Baudelaire in Les Poetesfrancais: Recueil des chefs-d'oeuvre de 
la poesiefranqaise, eel. Eugene Crepet (Paris, 1862), vol. 4, Les Contemporains: 
"We never read Les Fleurs du mal . . . without thinking involuntarily of that tale 
by Hawthorne <entitled "Rappaccini's Daughter"). . . . His muse resembles the 
doctor's daughter whom no poison can harm, but whose pallid and anemic complex- 
ion betrays the influence of the milieu she inhabits." Cited in W. T. Bandy, Baude- 
laire Judged by His Contemporaries (New York), p. 174. <See J29a,3> . [J3a,2] 

Main themes of Poe's aesthetic, according to Valery: philosophy of composition, 
theory of the artificial, theory of modernity, theory of the strange and exceptional. 


"Thus, Baudelaire's problem might have — indeed, must have — posed itself in 
these terms: 'How to he a great poet, but neither a Lamartine nor a Hugo nor a 
Musset.' I do not say that these words were consciously formulated, but they must 
have been latent in Baudelaire's mind; they even constituted what was the essen- 
tial Baudelaire. They were his raison d'etat. In the domain of creation, which is 
also the domain of pride, the need to come out and be distinct is part of life itself." 
Paul Valery, Introduction to Baudelaire, Les Fleurs du mal (Paris, 1928), p. x. 17 


Regis Messac (<Le '"Detective Novel" et V influence de la pensee scientifique [Paris, 
1929], > p. 421) points to the influence of the "Two Crepuscules" <"Le Crepuscule 
du matin" and "Le Crepuscule du soir," in Les Fleurs du mal>, first published 
February 1, 1852, in La Semaine thedtrale, on certain passages in Ponson du 
Terrail's Drames de Paris, which hegan to appear, in installments, in 1857. 


The title originally planned for Spleen de Paris was he Promeneur solitaire. For 
he Fleurs du mal it was Les Limbes <Limbo>. [ J4,l] 

From "Conseils aux jeunes litterateurs": "If one is willing to live in stuhborn 
contemplation of tomorrow's work, daily perseverance will serve inspiration." 
Charles Baudelaire, L'Art romantique, ed. Hachette, vol. 3 (Paris), p. 286.'" 


Baudelaire confesses to having had, "in childhood, the good fortune — or the mis- 
fortune — of reading only books for adults." Charles Baudelaire, L'Art roman- 
tique (Paris), p. 298 ("Drames et romans honnetes"). 19 [J4,3] 

On Heine: "<his> works are corrupted by materialistic sentimentality." Baude- 
laire, L'Art rommntique, p. 303 ("L'Ecole paienne"). 20 [J4,4] 

A motif that wandered from Spleen de Paris to "L'Ecole paienne": "Why don't the 
poor wear gloves when they heg? They would make a fortune." Baudelaire, LArt 
romantique (Paris), p. 309. 21 [J4,5] 

"The time is notf ar off when it will he understood that every literature that refuses 
to walk hand in hand with science and philosophy is a homicidal and suicidal 
literature." Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), p. 309 (concluding sentence of 
"L'Ecole paienne"). 22 [J4.6] 

Baudelaire on the child raised in the company of the Pagan School: "His soul, 
constantly excited and unappeased, goes ahout the world, the busy, toiling world; 
it goes, I say, like a prostitute, crying: Plastique! Plastique! The plastic — that 
frightful word gives me goose flesh." Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), 
p. 307. 21 Compare J22a,2. [J4,7] 

A passage from the portrait of Victor Hugo in which Baudelaire, like an engraver 
who sketches his own image in a remarque, has portrayed himself in a subordi- 
nate clause: "If he paints the sea, no seascape will equal his. The ships which 
furrow its surface or which cut through its foam will have, more than those of 
any other painter, the appearance of fierce combatants, the character of will and 
of animality which mysteriously emerges from a geometric and mechanical appa- 
ratus of wood, iron, ropes, and canvas; a monstrous animal created by man to 
which the wind and the waves add the beauty of movement." Baudelaire, L'Art 
romantique (Paris), p. 321 ("Victor Hugo"). 2 * [J4,8] 

A phrase apropos of Auguste Barbier: "the natural indolence of those who depend 
on inspiration." Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), p. 335. 25 [J4a,l] 

Baudelaire describes the poetry of the lyric poet — in the essay on Banville — in a 
way that, point for point, brings into view the exact opposite of his own poetry: 
"The word 'apotheosis' is one of those that unfailingly appear under the pen of 

the poet when he has to describe ... a mingling of glory and light. And if the lyric 
poet has occasion to speak of himself, he will not depict himself bent over a 
table, . . . wrestling with intractable phrases, . . . any more than he will show 
himself in a poor, wretched, or disorderly room; nor, if he wishes to appear dead, 
will he show himself rotting heneath a linen shroud in a wooden casket. That 
would be lying." Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), pp. 370-371. 26 [J4a,2] 

In his essay on Banville, Baudelaire mentions mythology together with allegory, 
and then continues: "Mythology is a dictionary of living hieroglyphics." Baude- 
laire, L'Art romantique (Paris), p. 370. 27 [J4a,3] 

Conjunction of the modern and the demonic: "Modern poetry is related at one 
and the same time to painting, music, sculpture, decorative art, satiric philosophy, 
and the analytic spirit. . . . Some could perhaps see in this symptoms of depravity 
of taste. But that is a question which I do not wish to discuss here." Nevertheless, 
a page later, after a reference to Beethoven, Maturin, Byron, and Poe, one reads: 
"I mean that modern art has an essentially demoniacal tendency. And it seems 
that this satanic side of man . . . increases every day, as if the devil, like one who 
fattens geese, enjoyed enlarging it by artificial means, patiently force-feeding the 
human race in his poultry yard in order to prepare himself a more succulent 
dish." Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), pp. 373-374. 28 The concept of the 
demonic comes into play where the concept of modernity converges with 
Catholicism. [J4a,4] 

Regarding Leconte de Lisle: "My natural predilection for Rome prevents me 
from feeling all the enjoyment that I should in the reading of bis Greek poems." 
Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), pp. 389-390. 29 Chthonic view of the world. 
Catholicism. [J4a,5] 

It is very important that the modern, with Baudelaire, appear not only as the 
signature of an epoch but as an energy by which this epoch immediately trans- 
forms and appropriates antiquity. Among all the relations into which modernity 
enters, its relation to antiquity is critical. Thus, Baudelaire sees confirmed in 
Hugo "the fatality which led him . . . partially to transform ancient ode and 
ancient tragedy into the poems and dramas that we know." Baudelaire, LArt 
romantique (Paris), p. 401 ("Les Miser able s"), m This is also, for Baudelaire, the 
function of Wagner. [ J 5 , 1 ] 

The gesture with which the angel chastises the miscreant: "Is it not useful for the 
poet, the philosopher, to take egoistic Happiness by the hair from time to time and 
say to it, while ruhhing its nose in blood and dung: 'See your handiwork and 
swallow it'?" Charles Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), p. 406 ("Les 
Miser ables")* ! [J5,2] 

"The Church, . . . that Pharmacy where no one has the right to slumber!" Baude- 
laire, L'Art romantique (Paris), p. 420 ("Madame Bovary")J 12 [J5,3] 

"Madame Bovary, in what is most forceful, most ambitious, and also most contem- w 
plative in her nature, has remained a man. Just as Pallas Athena sprang fully 
armed from the head of Zeus, so this strange androgynous creature has kept all the ^ 
attraction of a virile soul in a charming feminine body." Further along, on W 
Flaubert: "All intellectual women will be grateful to him for having raised the a. 
female to so high a level . . . and for having made her share in that combination of gi. 
calculation and reverie which constitutes the perfect being." Baudelaire, L'Art 
romantique, pp. 415, 419. 33 [J5,4] 

"Hysteria! Why couldn't this physiological mystery be made the sum and sub- 
stance of a literary work — this mystery which the Academie de Medecine has not 
yet solved and which, manifesting itself in women by the sensation of a lump in the 
throat that seems to rise . . . , shows itself in excitable men by every kind of impo- 
tence as well as hy a tendency toward every kind of excess." Baudelaire, L'Art 
romantique (Paris), p. 418 ("Madame Bovary" J. 34 [J5,5] 

From "Pierre Dupont": "Whatever the party to which one belongs, . . . it is impos- 
sible not to be moved by the sight of that sickly throng breathing the dust of the 
workshops, . . . sleeping among vermin . . . — that sighing and languishing throng 
. . . which looks long and sadly at the sunshine and shadows of the great parks." 
Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), pp. 198-199. 35 [J5a,l] 

From "Pierre Dupont": "By excluding morality, and often even passion, the puer- 
ile Utopia of the school of art for art's sake was inevitably sterile. . . . When there 
appeared a poet, awkward at times, hut almost always great, who proclaimed in 
impassioned language the sacredness of the Revolution of 1830 and sang of the 
destitution of England and Ireland, despite his defective rhymes, despite his pleo- 
nasms, . . . the question was settled, and art was thereafter inseparable from mo- 
rality and utility." Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), p. 193. 3f ' The passage 
refers to Barbier. [J5a,2] 

"The optimism of Dupont, his unlimited trust in the natural goodness of man, his 
fanatical love of nature constitute the greatest share of his talent." Baudelaire, 
L'Art romantique (Paris), p. 201. 37 [J5a,3] 

"I was not at all surprised to find ... in Tannhiiuser, Lohengrin, and The Flying 
Dutchman, an excellent method of construction, a spirit of order and division that 
recalls the architecture of ancient tragedies." Baudelaire, L'Art romantique 
(Paris), p. 225 ("Richard Wagner et Tannhauser")™ [J5a,4] 

"If, in his choice of subjects and in his dramatic method, Wagner resembles antiq- 
uity, by the passionate energy of his expression he is today the truest repre- 
sentative of modern nature." Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), p. 250. :w 


Baudelaire in "L'Art philosophique," an essay concerned mainly with Alfred Re- 
thel: "Here everything — place, decor, furnishings, accessories (see Hogarth, for 
example) — everything is allegory, allusion, hieroglyph, rebus." Baudelaire, L'Art 
romantique, p. 131. 10 There follows a reference to Michelet's interpretation of 
Diirer's Melancholia I. [J5a,6] 

Variant of the passage on Meryon cited by Gef'froy, in "Peintres et aqua-fortistes" 
(1862): "Just the other day a young American artist, M. Whistler, was showing . . . 
a set of etchings . . . representing the banks of the Thames; wonderful tangles of 
rigging, yardarms and rope; farragos of fog, furnaces, and corkscrews of smoke; 
the profound and intricate poetry of a vast capital. . . . M. Meryon, the true type 
of the consummate etcher, could not neglect the call. ... In the pungency, fi nesse, 
and sureness of his drawing, M. Meryon recalls all that was best in the old etchers. 
We have rarely seen the natural solemnity of a great capital more poetically de- 
picted. Those majestic accumulations of stone; those 'spires whose fingers point to 
heaven' ; those obelisks of industry, spewing forth their conglomerations of smoke 
against the firmament; those prodigies of scaffolding 'round buildings under re- 
pair, applying their openwork architecture, of such paradoxical and arachnean 
beauty, upon architecture's solid hody; that foggy sky, charged with anger and 
spite; those limitless perspectives, only increased by the thought of the dramas 
they contain — he forgot not one of the complex elements which go to make up the 
painful and glorious decor of civilization." Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), 
pp. 119-121." [ J6,l] 

On Guys: "The festivals of the Bairam, ... in the midst of which, like a pale sun, 
can he discerned the endless ennui of the late sultan." Baudelaire, L'Art roman- 
tique (Paris), p. 83. 42 [J6,2] 

On Guys: "Wherever those deep, impetuous desires, war, love, and gaming, are in 
full fl ood, like Orinocos of the human heart . . . , our observer is always punctu- 
ally on the spot." Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), p. 87. 4:! [ J6,3] 

Baudelaire as antipode of Rousseau, in the maxim from his essay on Guys: "For 
no sooner do we take leave of the domain of needs and necessities to enter that of 
pleasures and luxury than we see that nature can counsel nothing but crime. It is 
this infallible Mother Nature who has created parricide and cannibalism." Baude- 
laire, L'Art romantique (Paris), p. 100."' [JM] 

"Very difficult to note down in shorthand" — this, from the essay on Guys, is 
Baudelaire's appreciation, obviously very modern, of the movement of carriages. 
Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), p. 1 13. 45 [ J6,5] 

Closing sentences of the Guys essay: "He has gone everywhere in quest of the 
ephemeral, the fleeting forms of beauty in the life of our day, the characteristic 
traits of what, with the reader's permission, we have called 'modernity.' Often 
bizarre, violent, excessive, but always full of poetry, he has succeeded, in his 

drawings, in distilling the bitter or heady flavor of the wine of Life." Baudelaire, 
L'Art romantique (Paris), p. 114. 44 [J6a,l] 

The figure of the "modern" and that of "allegory" must he brought into relation 
with each other: "Woe unto him who seeks in antiquity anything other than pure 
art, logic, and general method! By plunging too deeply into the past, ... he 
renounces the . . . privileges provided by circumstances; for almost all our origi- 
nality comes from the stamp that time imprints upon our feelings <sensations>!' 
Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), p. 72 ("Le Peintre de la vie moderne"). 47 But 
the privilege of which Baudelaire speaks also comes into force, in a mediated way, 
vis-a-vis antiquity: the stamp of time that imprints itself on antiquity presses out 
of it the allegorical configuration. [ J6a,2] 

Concerning "Spleen et ideal," these reflections from the Guys essay: "Modernity is 
the transitory, the fugitive, the contingent; it is one half of art, the other half being 
the eternal and immutable. ... If any particular modernity is to be worthy of 
becoming antiquity, one must extract from it the mysterious beauty that human 
life involuntarily gives it. It is to this task that Monsieur G. particularly addresses 
himself." Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), p. 70. In another place (p. 74), he 
speaks of "this legendary translation of external life."' 18 [J6a,3] 

Motifs of the poems in the theoretical prose. "Le Coucher du soleil romantique" 
(Romantic Sunset>: "Dandyism is a sunset; like the declining daystar, it is glori- 
ous, without heat and full of melancholy. But alas, the rising tide of democracy . . . 
is daily overwhelming these last representatives of human pride" (L 'Art roman- 
tique, p. 95). — "Le Soleil" <The Sun>: "At a time when others are asleep, Monsieur 
G. is bending over his tahle, darting onto a sheet of paper the same glance that a 
moment ago he was directing toward external things, skirmishing with his pencil, 
his pen, his hrush, splashing his glass of water up to the ceiling, wiping his pen on 
his shirt, in a ferment of violent activity, as though afraid that the images might 
escape him, cantankerous though alone, elbowing himself on" (L'Art romantique, 
p. 67) * [J6a,4] 

Nouveaute: "The child sees everything in a state of newness; he is always drunk. 
Nothing more resembles what we call inspiration than the delight with which a 
child absorbs form and color. ... It is by this deep and joyful curiosity that we 
may explain the fixed and animally ecstatic gaze of a child confronted wkh 
something new." Baudelaire, L'Art romantique (Paris), p. 62 ("Le Peintre de la vie 
moderne"). Perhaps this explains the dark saying in "L'Oeuvre et la vie d'Eugene 
Delacroix": "For it is true to say that, generally speaking, the child, in relation to 
the man, is much closer to original sin" (L'Art romantique, p. 41). 50 [ J7,l] 

The sun: "the boisterous sun heating a tattoo upon his windowpane" (L'Art ro- 
mantique, p. 65); "the landscapes of the great city . . . huf feted by the sun" (L'Art 
romantique, pp. 65-66). ;>l []7 ',2] 

In "L'Oeuvre et la vie d'Eugene Delacroix": "The whole visible universe is but a 
storehouse of images and signs." Baudelaire, L'Art romantique, p. 13. 02 [J7,3] 

From the Guys essay: "Beauty is made up of an eternal, invariable element . . . 
and of a relative, circumstantial element, which will be . . . the age — its fashions, 
its morals, its emotions. Without this second element, which might be described as 
the amusing, enticing, appetizing icing on the divine cake, the first element would 
be beyond our powers of digestion." Baudelaire, L'Art romantique, pp. 54-55. 5:i 

IF A] 

On nouveaute: "Night! you'd please me more without these stars / which speak a 
language I know all too well." Flews <du mal>, ed. Payot, p. 139 ("Obsession"). 0 ' 1 


The subsequent appearance of the flower injugendstil is not without significance 
for the title Les Flews du mcd. This work spans the arch that reaches from the 
taedium vitae of the Romans tojugendstil. [J7,6] 

It would be important to determine Poe's relation to Latinity. Baudelaire's inter- 
est in the technique of composition could have led him — in the end — as surely to 
Latin culture as his interest in the artificial led him to Anglo-Saxon culture. 
W>rking through Poe, tliis latter area of culture also conditions — at the outset — 
Baudelaire's theory of composition. Hence, it becomes more urgent to ask 
whether this doctrine does not, in the end, bear a Latin stamp. [J7,7] 

The Lesbians — a painting by Courbet. [J 7,8] 

Nature, according to Baudelaire, knows this one luxury: crime. Thus the sig- 
nificance of the artificial. Perhaps we may draw on this thought for the interpreta- 
tion of the idea that children stand nearest to original sin. Is it because, exuberant 
by nature, they oumot get out of harm's way? At bottom, Baudelaire is thinking 
of parricide. (Compare L'Art romantique [Paris], p. 100.) 55 [J7a.l] 

The key to the emancipation from antiquity — which (see in the Guys essay, L'Art 
romantique, p. 72) M can furnish only the canon of composition — is for Baudelaire 
allegorese. [J7a,2] 

Baudelaire's manner of reciting. He gathered his friends — Antonio Watripon, 
Gabriel Dantrague, Malassis, Delvau — "in a modest cafe on the Rue Dau- 
phine. . . . The poet began by ordering punch; then, when he saw us all disposed 
toward benevolence . . . , he would recite to us in a voice at once mincing, soft, 
fluty, oily, and yet mordant, some enormity or other — "Le Vin de l'assassin" <The 
Murderer's Wine> or "Une Charogne" <Carrion>. The contrast between the vio- 
lence of the images and the perfect placidity, the suave and emphatic accentuation, 

of the delivery was truly striking." Jules Levallois, Milieu de siecle: Memoires d'un 
critique (Paris <1895>), pp. 93-94. [J7a,3] 

"The famous phrase, 'I who am the son of a priest'; the glee he was said to feel in 
eating nuts, when he would imagine he was munching the brains of small children; 
the story of the glazier who, at liis request, climbed six flights of stairs under a 
heavy load of windowpanes in oppressive summer heat, only to be told he was not 
needed — all just so many insanities, and probably falsehoods, which he delighted 
in amassing." Jules Levallois, Milieu de siecle: Memoires d'un critique (Paris), 

A remarkable pronouncement by Baudelaire on Gautier (cited in Jules Levallois, 
Milieu de siecle: Memoires d'un critique [Paris], p. 97). It is recorded by Charles 
de Lovenjoul, "Un Dernier Chapitre de l'histoire des oeuvres de Balzac," in 
L'Echo des theatres of August 25, 1846, as follows: "Fat, lazy, sluggish, he has no 
ideas, and can only string words together as the Osage strings beads for a neck- 

Highly significant letter from Baudelaire to Toussenel: "Monday, January 21, 
1856. My dear Toussenel, I really want to thank you for your gift. I didn't know 
the value of your book — I admit it simply and baldly. . . . For a long time I've been 
rejecting almost all books with a feeling of disgust. It's been a long time, too, since 
I've read anything so absolutely instructive and amusing. The chapter on the 
falcon and the birds that hunt on man's behalf is a masterpiece in itself. / There 
are expressions in your book that recall those of the great masters and which are 
cries of truth — expressions whose tone is irresistibly philosophical, such as, 
'Every animal is a sphinx,' and, with regard to analogy, 'What repose the mind 
finds in gentle quietude, sheltered by so fertile and so simple a doctrine, for which 
none of God's works is a mystery!' . . . What is beyond doubt is that you are a 
poet. I've been saying for a very long time that the poet is supremely intelligent . . . 
and that imagination is the most scientific of faculties, for it alone can understand 
the universal analogy, or what a mystic religion calls correspondence. But when I 
try to publish such statements, I'm told I'm mad. . . . What is absolutely certain is 
that I have a philosophical cast of mind that allows me to see clearly what is true, 
even in zoology, although I'm neither a huntsman nor a naturalist. . . . One idea 
has been uppermost in my thoughts since I started reading your book — and this is 
that you're a true intelligence which has wandered into a sect. All things consid- 
ered, what do you owe to Fourier? Nothing, or very little. Without Fourier you 
would still be what you are. Rational men didn't await Fourier's arrival on earth 
to realize that nature is a language, an allegory, a mold, an embossing, if you 
like. . . . Your book arouses in me a great many dormant thoughts — and where 
original sin is concerned, as well as . . .form molded on an idea, I've often thought 
that noxious, disgusting animals were, perhaps, merely the coming to life in hodily 
form of man's evil thoughts. . . . Thus, the whole of nature participates in original 
sin. / Don't hold my boldness and straightforwardness against me, hut believe 

pp. 94-95. 


lace." <See J36a,l.> 


TheopbileGautier, 1854-1855. Photo by Nadar. Musee d'Orsay, 
Paris; photo copyright © RMN. SeeJ7a,5. 

that I am your devoted . . . Ch. Baudelaire.""' 7 Henri Cordier, Notules sur Baude- 
laire (Paris, 1900), pp. 5-7. The middle section of the letter polemicizes against 
Toussenel's faith in progress and liis denunciation of de Maistre. [ J8] 

"Origin of the name Baudelaire. Here is what M. Georges Barral has written on 
this subject in the La Revue des curiosites revolutionnaires: Baudelaire explained 
the etymology of his name, which, he said, came not from bel or beau hut from 
band or bald. 'My name is something terrible,' he declared. 'As a matter of fact, 
the badelaire was a saher with a short, broad blade and a convex cutting edge, 
hooked at the tip. ... It was introduced into France after the Crusades and used 
in Paris until around 1560 for executing criminals. Some years ago, in 1861, dur- 
ing excavations carried out near the Pont-au-Change, they recovered the bade- 
laire used by the executioner at the Grand Chatelet in the twelfth century. It was 
deposited in the Musee de Cluny. Go and have a look. It is frightening to see. I 
shudder to think how the profile of my face approximates the profile of this bade- 

/••lire.' — 'Bnt your name is Baudelaire,' I replied, 'not B&delaireJ' — 'Badelaire, 
Baudelaire by corruption. It's the same thing.' — 'Not at all,' I say. 'Your name 
comes from baud (merry), baudiment (merrily), s'ebaudir (to make merry). You 
are kind and cheerful.' — 'No, no, I am wicked and sad.'" Louis Thomas, Cu- 
riosites sir Baudelaire (Paris , 1912), pp. 23-24. [ J8a,l] 

Jnles Janin published an article in 1865, in L'Independanee beige, reproaching 
Heine for his melancholy; Baudelaire drafted a letter in response. "Baudelaire 
maintains that melancholy is the source of all sincere poetry." Louis Thomas, 
Curiosites sur Baudelaire (Paris, 1912), p. 17. [J8a,2] 

On a visit to an Academician, 511 Baudelaire refers to Les Fleurs du bien that ap- 
peared in 1858 and claims the name of the author — Henry (probably Henri) Bor- 
deaux — as his own pseudonym. See L. Thomas, Curiosites sur Baudelaire (Paris, 
1912), p. 4.3. [J8a,3] 

"On the lie Saint-Louis , Baudelaire felt at home everywhere; he was as perfectly at 
his ease in the street or on the quays as he would have been in his own room. To go 
out into the island was in no way to quit his domain. Thus, one met him in slippers, 
hareheaded, and dressed in the tunic that served as his work clothes." Louis 
Thomas, Curiosites sur Baudelaire(Paris, 1912), p. 27. [J8a,4] 

"'When I'm utterly alone,'' he wrote in 1864, 'I'll seek out a religion (Tihetan or 
Japanese), for I despise the Koran too much, and on my deathhed I'll forswear 
that last religion to show beyond douht my disgust with universal stupidity. 
Louis Thomas, Curiosites sur Baudelaire (Paris, 1912), pp. 57-58. [J8a,5] 

Baudelaire's production is masterly and assured from the beginning. [J 9 J] 

Dates. Hem s du ma/: 1857, 1861, 1866. Poe: 1809-1849. Baudelaire's discovery 
of Poe: around the end of 1846. [J9,2] 

Remy de Gourmont has drawn a parallel hetween Athalie's dream and "Les Meta- 
morphoses dn vampire"; Fontainas has endeavored to do likewise with Hugo's 
"Fantomes" (in Les Orientates) and "Les Petites Vieilles." Hugo: "How many 
maidens fair, alas! I've seen fade and die. . . . One form, above all . . ." f,u [ J9,3] 

Laforgue on Baudelaire: "After all the liherties of Romanticism, he was the first to 
discover these crude comparisons which suddenly, in the midst of a harmonious 
period, cause him to put his foot in his plate; palpahle, exaggerated comparisons 
which seem at times downright American; disconcerting purplish flash and dazzle: 
'Night was thickening . . . like a partition!' (Other examples abound.) <Her walk is 
like> a serpent at the end of a stick; her hair is an ocean; her head sways with the 
gentleness of a young elephant; her hody leans like a frail vessel pluuging its 
yardarms into the water; her saliva mounts to her mouth like a wave swollen by the 

melting of rumhling glaciers; her neck is a tower of ivory; her teeth are sheep 
perched on the hills ahove Hebron. — This is Americanism superimposed on the 
metaphorical language of the 'Song of Songs.'" Jules Laforgue, Melanges post- 
hiunes (Paris, 1903), pp. 113-114. ("Notes sur Baudelaire")."' Compare J86a,3. 


"In the fogs along the Seine, the storm of his youth and the marine suns of his 
memories have loosened the strings of an incurably plaintive and shrill Byzantine 
viol." Jules Laforgue, Melanges posthumes (Paris, 1903), p. 114. ("Notes sur 
Baudelaire")." 2 [J9,5] 

When the first edition of Les Fleurs du mal appeared, Baudelaire was thirty-six 
years old. [ J9,6] 

Le Vavasseur describes him around 1844: "Byron attired like Beau Brummell." 


The Petits Poemes en prose were first collected posthumously. [ J9,8] 

"He was the lirst to hreak with the public." Laforgue, Melanges posthumes (Paris, 
1903), p. 115* [ J9.9] 

"Baudelaire the cat, Hindu, Yankee, episcopal, alchemist. — Cat: his way of saying 
'my dear' in that solemn piece that opens with 'Behave, my Sorrow!' — Yankee: 
the use of 'very' hefore an adjective; his eurt descriptions of landscape, and the 
line 'Mount, my spirit, wander at your ease,' which the initiated recite in metallic 
tones; his hatred of eloquence and of poetic confidences; 'Vaporous pleasure will 
drift out of sight / As . . .' what then'.'' Hugo, Gautier, and others before him would 
have made a French, oratorical comparison; he makes a Yankee one and, without 
settled prejudice, remains in the air: 'As a sylphid pirouettes into the wings' (you 
can see the iron wires and stage machinery). — Hindu: his poetry is closer to the 
Indian than that of Leconte de Lisle with all his erudition and dazzling intricacy: 
'of sohhing fountains and of birds that sing / endless ohbligatos to my trysts.' 
Neither a great heart nor a great intellect, hut what plaintive nerves! What open 
senses! What a magical voice!" Jules Laforgue, Melanges posthumes (Paris, 1903), 
pp. 118-119 ("Notes sur Baudelaire")." 1 [ J9a,l] 

One of the few clearly articulated passages of the Argunmt du lhre stir la Bel- 
gique— in chapter 27, "Promenade a Malines": "Profane airs, adapted to peals of 
bells. Through the crossing and recrossing melodies, I seemed to hear notes from 
"La Marseillaise." The hymn of the rabble, as broadcast from the belfries, had 
lost a little of its harshness. Chopped into small pieces by the hammers, this was 
not the usual gloomy howling; rather, it had taken on, to my ears, a childish 
grace. It was as though the Revolution had learned to stutter in the language of 

heaven." Baudelaire, Oeuvres, vol. 2, ed. Y<ves>-G<erard> Le Dantec <Paris, 1931— 
1932>, p. 725. [J9a,2] 

From the "Note detachee" in the book on Belgium: "I am no dupe, and I have 
never been a dupe! I say, 'Long live the Revolution!' as I would say, 'Long live 
Destruction! Long live Expiation! Long live Punishment! Long live Death!'" 
Baudelaire, Oeuvres, vol. 2, ed. Y.-G. Le Dantec, pp. 727-728/' 5 [J9a,3] 

Argument du livre sur la Belgique, chapter 25, "Architecture — Churches — Relig- 
ions." "Brussels. Churches: Sainte-Gudule. Magnificent stained-glass windows. 
Beautiful intense colors, like those with which a profound soul invests all the 
objects of life." Baudelaire, Oeuvres, vol. 2, ed. Y.-G. Le Dantec, p. 722. — "Mort 
dcs amants" — Jugendstil — Hashish. [ }9a,4] 

"I asked myself whether Baudelaire . . . had not sought, through histrionics and 
psychic transfer, to revive the adventures of the prince of Denmark. . . . There 
would have been nothing surprising in his having performed for himself the drama 
of Elsinore." Leon Daudet, Flambeaux (Paris <1929>), p. 210 ("Baudelaire"). 


"The inner life . . . of Charles Baudelaire . . . seems to have passed . . . inconstant 
fluctuation between euphoria and aura. Hence the double character of his poems, 
which, on the one hand, represent a luminous beatitude and, on the other, a state 
of . . . taedium vitae." Leon Daudet, Flambeaux (Paris), p. 212 ("Baudelaire"). 


Jeanne Duval, Madame Sabatier, Marie Daubrun. [J10,3] 

"Baudelaire was out of place in the stupid nineteenth century. He belongs to the 
Renaissance. . . . This can be felt even in the beginnings of his poems, which recall 
those of Ronsard." Leon Daudet, Flambeaux (Paris), p. 216 ("Baudelaire: Le 
Malaise et i'aura'"). [ J10.4] 

Leon Daudet voices a very unfavorable judgment on Sainte-Beuve's Baudelaire. 


Among those who have pictured the city of Paris, Balzac is, so to speak, the 
primitive; his human figures are larger than the streets they move in. Baudelaire 
is the first to have conjured up the sea of houses, with its multistory waves. 
Perhaps in a context with Haussmann. [ J10,G] 

"The baudelaire ... is a kind of cutlass. . . . Broad and short and double- 
edged, . . . the baudelaire ensures a deadly thrust, for the hand that holds it is 
near the point." Victor-Emile Michelet, Figures d'evocateurs (Paris, 1913), p. 18 
("Baudelaire, ou Le Divinateur douloureux"). [J10,7] 

"The dandy, Baudelaire has said, 'should aspire to be sublime, continually. He 
should live and sleep in front of a mirror. " ,f>6 Louis Thomas, Curiosites sur Baude- 
laire (Paris, 1912), pp. 33-34. [J10,8] 

Two stanzas by Baudelaire, found on the page of an album: 

Noble strong-armed woman, who sleep and dream 

throughout long days with no thought of good or evil, 

who wear robes proudly slung in Grecian style; 

you whom for many years (which seem slow to me now) 

my lips, well versed in luscious kisses, 

cherished with all the devotion of a monk; 

priestess of debauch, my sister in lust, 
who disdained to carry and nourish 
a male child in your hallowed urn, 
hut fear and flee the appalling stigmata 
which virtue carved with its degrading blade 
in pregnant matrons' flanks/' 7 

Louis Thomas, Curiosites sur Baudelaire (Paris, 1912), p. 37. [ J10,9] 

"He was the^irst to write about himself in a moderate confessional manner, and to 
leave off the inspired tone. / He was the first to speak of Paris from the point of 
view of one of her daily damned (the lighted gas jets flickering with the wind of 
Prostitution, the restaurants and their air vents, the hospitals, the gambling, the 
logs resounding as they are sawn and then dropped on the paved courtyards, and 
the chimney corner, and the cats, beds, stockings, drunkards, and modern per- 
fumes) — all in a noble, remote, and superior fashion. . . . The first also who ac- 
cuses himself rather than appearing triumphant, who shows his wounds, his 
laziness, his bored uselessness at the heart of this dedicated, workaday century. / 
The first to bring to our literature the boredom implicit in sensuality, together with 
its strange decor: the sad alcove, . . . and to take pleasure in doing so. . . . The 
Painted Mask of Woman and its heavenly extension in sunset . . . Spleen and 
illness (not the poetic aspects of consumption but rather neurosis) without ever 
once using the word." Laforgue, Melanges posthumes (Paris, 1903), pp. 111- 
112. 68 [JlOa.l] 

"From the mysterious darkness in which they had germinated, sent out secret 
roots, and reared their fecund stalks, Les Fleurs du mal have gone on to blossom 
magnificently, opening up their somber jagged corollas veined with the colors of 
life and, under an endless sky of glory and scandal, scattering their heady per- 
fumes of love, of sorrow, and of death." Henri de Regnier, ("Baudelaire et Les 
Fleurs du mal," introductory essay> in Charles Baudelaire, "Les Fleurs du mal" et 
autres poemes (Paris <1930>), p. 18. [J10a,2] 

"He is always polite to what is ugly." Jules Laforgue, Melanges posthumes (Paris, 
1903), p. 114. M [J10a,3] 

Roger Allard — in Baudelaire et"V Esprit nouveau" (Paris, 1918), p. 8 — compares 
Baudelaire's poems to Madame Sabatier with Ronsard's poems to Helene. 


"Two writers profoundly influenced Baudelaire, or rather two books. . . . One is 
the delicious Diable amoureux, by Cazotte; the other, Diderot's La Religieuse. To 
the first, many of the poems owe their restless frenzy . . . ; with Diderot, Baude- 
laire gathers the somber violets of Lesbos." At this point, in a note, a citation from 
Apollinaire's commentary to his edition of Baudelaire's Oeuvres poetiques: "One 
would probably not go wrong in taking Cazotte as the hyphen that had the 
honor of uniting, in . . . Baudelaire, the spirit of the Revolution's writers with that 
of Edgar Poe." Roger Allard, Baudelaire et "V Esprit nouveau" (Paris, 1918), 
pp. 9-10. <SeeJ20a,2.> [J10a,5] 

"The flavor of late autumn . . . which Baudelaire savored . . . in the literary de- 
composition of low Latin." Roger Allard, Baudelaire et "I'Esprit nouveau" (Paris, 
1918), p. 14. [J11.1] 

"Baudelaire ... is the most musical of French poets, along with Racine and Ver- 
laine. But whereas Racine plays only the violin, Baudelaire plays the whole or- 
chestra." Andre Suares, Preface to Charles Baudelaire, Les Fleurs du mml (Paris, 
1933), pp. xxxiv-xxxv. [Jll,2] 

"If Baudelaire is supremely contained, as no one since Dante has been, it is be- 
cause he always concentrates on the inner life, as Dante focnsed on dogma." Andre 
Suares, Preface to Baudelaire, Les Fleurs du mal (Paris, 1933), p. xxxviii. 


Les Fleurs du mal is the Inferno of the nineteenth century. But Baudelaire's de- 
spair carries him infinitely beyond the wrath of Dante." Andre Suares, Preface to 
Baudelaire, Les Fleurs du mal (Paris, 1933), p. xiii. [ J 11, 4] 

"There is no artist in verse snperior to Baudelaire." Andre Suares, Preface to 
Baudelaire, Les Fleurs du mal (Paris, 1933), p. xxiii. [ Jll,5] 

Apollinaire: "Baudelaire is the scion of Laclos and Edgar Poe." Cited in Roger 
Allard, Baudelaire et "VEsprit nouveau" (Paris, 1918), p. 8. [ Jll,6] 

The "Choix de maximes consolantes sur l'amour" <Selected Consolatory Maxims 
on Love> contains an excursus on ugliness (first published March 3, 1846, in Le 
Corsaire-Satan). The beloved has contracted smallpox and suffered scars, which 
from then on are the lover's delight: "You run a grave risk, if your pockmarked 

mistress betrays you, of being able to console yourself only with pockmarked 
women. For certain spirits, more precious and more jaded, delight in ugliness 
proceeds from an obscurer sentiment still — the thirst for the unknown and the 
taste for the horrible. It is this sentiment . . . which drives certain poets into the 
dissecting room or the clinic, and women to public executions. I am sincerely sorry 
for the man who cannot understand this — he is a harp who lacks a hass string!" 
Baudelaire, Oeuvres, vol. 2, ed. Y.-G. Le Dantec, p. 621.™ [JH, 7 ] 

The idea of "correspondences" surfaces already in the "Salon de 1846," where a 
passage of Kreisleriana is cited. (See the note by Le Dantec, Oeuvres, vol. 1, 
p. 585.)" ' [Jll,8] 

In considering the aggressive Catholicism displayed in Baudelaire's later work, 
one must bear in mind that his writing had met with scant success during his 
lifetime. This could have led Baudelaire, in rather unusual fashion, to align 
himself or rather to identify himself with the completed works. His particular 
sensuality found its theoretical equivalents only in the process of poetic composi- 
tion; these equivalents, however, the poet appropriated to himself as such, uncon- 
ditionally and without any sort of revision. They bear the trace of this origin 
precisely in their aggressiveness. [ Jlla,l] 

"He has on a blood-red cravat and rose gloves. Yes, it is 1840. . . . Some years, 
even green gloves were worn. Color disappeared from outfits only reluctantly. For 
Baudelaire was not alone in sporting that purple or brick-colored cravat. Not 
alone in wearing pink gloves. His trademark is in the combination of the two 
effects with the black outfit." Eugene Marsan, Les Cannes de M. Paul Bourget et le 
bon choix de Phdinte (Paris, 1923), pp. 236-237. [Jlla,2] 

"His utterances, Gautier thought, were full of 'capital letters and italics.' He 
appeared . . . surprised at what he himself said, as if he heard in his own voice the 
words of a stranger. But it must be admitted that his women and his sky, his 
perfumes, his nostalgia, his Christianity and his demon, his oceans and his trop- 
ics, made for a suh ject matter of stunning novelty. ... I do not even criticize his 
jerky gait, . . . which made people compare lum to a spider. It was the beginning of 
that angular gesticulation which, little hy little, would displace the rounded graces 
of the old world. Here, too, he is a precursor." Eugene Marsan, Les Cannes de 
M. Paid Bourget et le bon choix de Phdinte (Paris, 1923), pp. 239-240. [ Jlla,3] 

"His gestures were nohle, slow, kept in close to the body. His politeness seemed 
affected hecause it was a legacy of the eighteenth century, Baudelaire being the son 
of an old man who had known the salons." Eugene Marsan, Les Cannes de M. Paul 
Bourget et le bon choix de Phdinte (Paris, 1923), p. 239. [Jlla,4] 

There are two different versions of Baudelaire's dehut in Brussels. 72 Georges 
Rency, who reproduces hoth, prefers the one hy the chronicler Tardieu. "In a 

horrible funk," writes the latter, "Baudelaire read and stammered and trembled, 
his teeth chattering, his nose huried in his manuscript. It was a disaster." Camille 
Lemonnier, on the other hand, came away with the "impression of a magnificent 
talker." Georges Rency, Physionomies litteraires (Brussels, 1907), pp. 267, 268 
("Charles Baudelaire"). [J12.1] 

"He . . . never made a serious effort to understand what was external to him." 
Georges Rency, Physionomies litteraires (Brussels, 1907), p. 274 ("Charles 
Baudelaire"). [J12,2] 

"Baudelaire is as incapahle of love as of labor. He loves as he writes, by lits and 
starts, and then relapses into the dissolute egoism of a flaneur. Never does he show 
the slightest curiosity about human affairs or the slightest consciousness of human 
evolution. . . . His art could therefore be said ... to sin by reason of its narrow- 
ness and singularity; these, indeed, are defects which put off sane and upright 
minds such as love clear works of universal import." Georges Rency, Physiono- 
mies litteraires (Brussels, 1907), p. 288 ("Charles Baudelaire"). [ J12,3] 

"Like many another author of his day, he was not a writer but a stylist. His images 
are almost always inappropriate. He will say of a look that it is 'gimlet-sharp.' . . . 
He will call repentance 'the last hostelry.' . . . Baudelaire is a still worse writer in 
prose than in verse. . . . He does not even know grammar. 'No French writer,' he 
says, 'ardent for the glory of the nation, can, without pride and without regrets, 
divert his gaze. . .' The solecism here is not only flagrant; it is foolish." Edmond 
Scherer, Etudes sur la litterature contemporaine, vol. 4 (Paris, 1886), pp. 288- 
289 ("Baudelaire"). [J12.4] 

"Baudelaire is a sign not of decadence in letters but of the general lowering of 
intelligence." Edmond Scherer, Etudes sur la litterature contemporaine, vol. 4 
(Paris, 1886), p. 291 ("Charles Baudelaire"). [J12.5] 

Brunetiere recognizes, with Gautier, that Baudelaire has opened new territory for 
poetry. Among the criticisms registered against him by the literary historian is 
this: "Moreover, he was a poet who lacked more than one element of his art — nota- 
bly (according to people who knew him) the gift of thinking directly in verse." 
F<erdinand> Brunetiere, L'Evolution de la poesie lyrique en France au XIX" 
siecle, vol. 2 (Paris, 1894), p. 232 ("Le Symbolisme"). [J12.6] 

Brunetiere (L'Evolution de la poesie lyrique en France au XIX" siecle, vol. 2 
[Paris, 1894]) distinguishes Baudelaire on one side from the school of Rusltin, and 
on the other from the Russian novelists. In both these movements he sees currents 
which, with good reason, resist the decadence proclaimed by Baudelaire, opposing 
to everything hypercultivated the primitive simplicity and innocence of natural 
man. A synthesis of these antithetical tendencies would he represented by Wag- 

ner. — Brunetiere arrived at this relatively positive estimation of Baudelaire only 
helatedly(1892). [J12a,l] 

On Baudelaire in relation to Hugo and Gautier: "He treats the great masters he 
learned from as he treats women: he adores and vilifies them." U.-V. Chatelain, 
Baudelaire, I'homme et le poete (Paris), p. 21. [J12a,2] 

Baudelaire on Hugo: "Not only does he express precisely and translate literally 
what is clearly and distinctly visible, but he expresses with indispensable obscu- 
rity what is obscure and vaguely revealed." Citing this sentence in Baudelaire, 
I'homme et le poete (Paris), p. 22, Chatelain rightly says that Baudelaire is perhaps 
the only man of his time to have understood the "secret Mallarmeism" of Hugo. 


"Barely sixty people followed the hearse in the sweltering heat; Banville and 
Asselineau, under a gathering storm, made beautiful speeches that nobody could 
hear. With the exception of Veuillot in L'Univers, the press was cruel. Everything 
bore down on his remains. A gale dispersed his friends; his enemies . . . called 
him 'mad.'" U.-V. Chatelain, Baudelaire, I'homme et le poete (Paris), p. 16. 


For the experience of the correspondances, Baudelaire refers occasionally to 
Swedenborg, and also to hashish. [J12a,5] 

Baudelaire at a concert: "Two piercing black eyes, gleaming with a peculiar vivid- 
ness, alone animated the figure that seemed frozen in its shell." Lorcdan Larchey, 
Fragments de souvenirs (Paris, 1901), p. 6 ("Le Boa de Baudelaire — L'lmpecca- 
hle Banville"). [J12a,6] 

Larchey is an eyewitness to Baudelaire's first visit to an Academician — a call paid 
to Jules Sandeau. Larchey finds himself in the entrance hall soon after Baudelaire. 
"When I arrived, ... at the appointed hour, a bizarre spectacle informed me I had 
been preceded. All around the hat-pegs of the antechamber was coiled a long 
scarlet hoa, one of those boas in chenille of which young working-class women are 
particularly fond." L. L<archey, Fragments de souvenirsy, p. 7. [ J12a,7] 

Tableau of decadence: "Behold our great cities under the fog of tobacco smoke 
that envelops them, thoroughly sodden by alcohol, infused with morphine: it is 
there that humanity comes unhinged. Rest assured that this source breeds more 
epileptics, idiots, and assassins than poets." Maurice Barres, La Folie de Charles 
Baudelaire (Paris <1926>), pp. 104-105. [J13.1] 

"In conclusion, I would like to imagine that a government such as we conceive after 
the model of Hobbes would strive to arrest, by some vigorous therapeutic met hod, 
the spread of these doctrines, which are as productive of malingerers and trouhle- 

makers as they are useless for forming citizens. . . . But I think that the wise 
despot, after careful reflection, would refrain from intervening, faithful to the 
tradition of an agreeable philosophy: Apres nous le deluge.' 1 '' Maurice Barres, La 
Folie de Charles Baudelaire (Paris), pp. 103-104. [J13.2] 

"Baudelaire was perhaps only a hard-working soul who felt and understood what 
was new through Poe, and who disciplined himself in the course of his life to 
become specialized." Maurice Barres, La Folie de Charles Baudelaire (Paris), 
p. 98. [J13.3] 

"Let us perhaps guard against taking these poets too quickly for Christians. The 
liturgical language, the angels, the Satans . . . are merely a mise en scene for the 
artist who judges that the picturesque is well worth a Mass." 73 Maurice Barres, La 
Folie de Charles Baudelaire (Paris), pp. 44-45. [ J13,4] 

"His best pages are overwhelming. He rendered superb prose into difficult verse." 
Maurice Barres, La Folie de Charles Baudelaire (Paris), p. 54. [ J13,5] 

"Scattered across the sky like luminous seeds of gold and silver, radiatingoutfrom 
the deep darkness of night, the stars represent [for Baudelaire] the ardor and 
energy of the human imagination." Elisabeth Schinzel, ISatur und Natursymbolik 
bei Poe, Baudelaire und den franzdsischen Symbolisten (Diiren [Rhineland], 
1931), p. 32. [J13.6] 

"His voice . . . muffled like the nighttime rumble of vehicles, filtering into plushly 
upholstered bedrooms." Maurice Barres, La Folie de Charles Baudelaire (Paris), 
p. 20. [J13.7] 

"It might seem, at first, that Baudelaire's oeuvre was relatively infertile. Some wits 
compared it to a narrow basin dug with effort in a gloomy spot shrouded in 
haze. . . . The influence of Baudelaire was revealed in Le Parnasse contemporain 
... of 1865. . . . Three figures emerge: . . . Stephane Mallarme, Paul Verlaine, and 
Maurice Rollinat." Maurice Barres, La Folie de Charles Baudelaire (Paris), 
pp. 61, 63, 65. [J13.8] 

"And the place occupied hy racial epithets among the rabble at that time!" 
Maurice Barres, La Folie de Charles Baudelaire (Paris), p. 40. [ J13a,l] 

Flaubert to Baudelaire: "You praise the flesh without loving it, Lti a melancholy, 
detached way that I find sympathetic. Ah! how well you understand the boredom 
of existence!" 74 Cited in Maurice Barres, La Folie de Charles Baudelaire (Paris), 
p. 31. [J13a,2] 

Baudelaire's predilection for Juvenal may well have to do with the latter's being 
one of the first urban poets. Compare this observation by Thibaudet: "hi survey- 

ing the great epochs of urban life, we see that the more the city provides poets 
and other people with their intellectual and moral life, the more forcefully poetry 
is pushed outside the city. When, ... in the Greek world, that life was fostered 
within the great cosmopolitan centers of Alexandria and Syracuse, these cities 
gave birth to pastoral poetry. When the Rome of Augustus came to occupy a 
similar position of centrality, the same poetry of shepherds, ... of pristine nature, 
appeared with the Bucolics and the Georgics of Virgil. And in eighteenth-century 
France, at the most brilliant moment ... of Parisian existence, the pastoral re- 
appears as part of a return to antiquity. . . . The only poet in whom one might 
find a foretaste of Baudelairean urbanism (and of other things Baudelairean as 
well) would be perhaps, at certain moments, Saint-Amant." Albert Thibaudet, 
Interieurs (Paris <1924>), pp. 7-9. [J13a,3] 

"In passing from all these Romantic poets to Baudelaire, we pass from a landscape 
of nature to a landscape of stone and llesh. ... A religious awe of nature, which, 
for these . . . Romantics, was part of their familiarity with nature, has become 
with Baudelaire a hatred of nature." [?] [J13a,4] 

Baudelaire on Musset: "Except at the age of one's first Communion — in other 
words, at the age when everything having to do with prostitutes and silk stockings 
produces a religious effect — I have never been able to endure that paragon of 
lady-killers, his spoilecl-child's impudence, invoking heaven and hell in tales of 
dinner-table conversations, his muddy torrent of mistakes in grammar and pros- 
ody, and finally his utter incapacity to understand the process by which a reverie 
becomes a work of art." 75 Thibaudet, who quotes this remark in Interieurs (p. 15), 
juxtaposes it with one by Brunetiere on Baudelaire: "He's just a Satan with a 
furnished apartment, a Beelzehuh of the dinner table" (p. 16). [J13a,5] 

"A sonnet like 'A Une Passante' <To a Woman Passing By>, a stanza like the last 
stanza of that sonnet 76 . . . could blossom only in the milieu of a great capital, 
where human beings live together as strangers to one another and yet as travelers 
on the same journey. Among all the capitals, Paris alone produces such beings as a 
natural fruit." Albert Thihaudet, Interieurs (Paris), pp. 22 ("Baudelaire"). 


"He carried about him as sorrowful trophy ... a burden of memories, so that he 
seemed to live in a continual paramnesia. . . . The poet carries within himself a 
living duree <perduration> which odors call forth . . . and with which they min- 
gle. .. . This city is a duree, an inveterate life-form, a memory. ... If he loved in 
... a Jeanne Duval some immemorial stretch of night . . . , this will be only a 
symbol ... of that true duree . . . that is consubstantial with the life and being of 
Paris, the duree of those very old, rumpled creatures who (it seemed to him) ought 
to form, like the capital itself, massive blocks and unending embankments of 
memories." (Reference is to "Les Petites Vieilles.") Albert Thihaudet, Interieurs 
(Paris), pp. 24-27 ("Baudelaire"). [ J14,2] 

Thibauclet juxtaposes Baudelaire's "Une Charogne" <Carrion> with Gautier's "La 
Comedie de la mort" <The Comedy of Death) and Hugo's "L'Epopee du ver" <The 
Epic of the Wormxl nterieurs, p. 46>. [ J14,3] 

Thibaudet adverts very apdy to the connection between confession and mys- 
tification in Baudelaire. Through the latter, Baudelaire's pride compensates itself 
for the former. "Ever since Rousseau's Confessions, it seems that all our literature 
of the personal has taken its departure from the broken-down furniture of relig- 
ion, from a debunked confessional." Thibaudet, Interieurs (Paris), p. 47 ("Baude- 
laire"). Mystification a figure of original sin. [J14,4] 

Thibaudet (Interieurs, p. 34) cites a remark from 1887, in wliich Brunetiere calls 
Baudelaire "a species of oriental idol, monstrous and misshapen, whose natural 
deformity is heightened by strange colors." [ J14,5] 

In 1859 Mistral's Mireille appeared. Baudelaire was incensed at the book's suc- 
cess. [J14.6] 

Baudelaire to Vigny: "The only praise I ask for this book is that readers recognize 
it's not a mere album, but has a beginning and an end." 77 Cited in Thibaudet, 
Interieurs (Paris), p. 5. [ J14,7] 

Thibaudet concludes his essay on Baudelaire with the allegory of the sick muse, 
who, on Rastignac Hill on the Right Bank of the Seine, forms a pendant to the 
Montagne Sainte-Genevieve on the Left Bank (pp. 60-61). [ J14,8] 

Baudelaire: "of all our great poets, the one who writes worst — if Alfred de Vigny 
be excepted." Thibaudet, Interieurs (Paris), p. 58 ("Baudelaire"). [ J14,9] 

Poulet-Malassis had his "shop" in the Passage des Princes, called in those days the 
Passage Mires. [J14a,l] 

"Violet boa on which curled his long graying locks, carefully maintained, which 
gave him a somewhat clerical appearance." < Jules Husson> Champlleury, Souve- 
nirs et portraits de jeunesse (Paris, 1872), p. 144' ("Rencontre de Baudelaire"). 


"He worked, not always consciously, at that misunderstanding which isolated him 
in his own time; he worked at it all the more as this misunderstanding was already 
taking shape in himself. His private notes, published posthumously, are painfully 
revealing in this respect. ... As soon as this artist of incomparable subtlety speaks 
of himself, he is astonishingly awkward. Irreparably he lacks pride — to the point 
where he reckons incessantly with fools, either to astound them, to shock them, or 
after all to inform them that he absolutely does not reckon with fools." Andre 

Gide, Preface to Charles Baudelaire, Les Fleurs du mal, ed. Edouard Pelletan 
(Paris, 1917), pp. xiii-xiv. 78 [J14a,3] 

'"This hook has not been written for my wives, my daughters, or my sisters,' he 
says, speaking of Les Fleurs du mal. Why warn us? Why this sentence? Oh, simply 
for the pleasure of affronting bourgeois morals, with the words 'my wives' slipped 
in, as if carelessly. He values them, however, since we find in his private journal: 
'This cannot shock my wives, my daughters, or my sisters.'" Andre Gide, Preface 
to Charles Baudelaire, Les Fleurs du mal, ed. Edouard Pelletan (Paris, 1917), 
p. xiv. 7 " [J14a,4] 

"Without doubt, Baudelaire is the artist about whom the most nonsense has been 
written." Andre Gide, Preface to Ch<arles> B<audelaire>, Les Fleurs du mal, ed. 
Edouard Pelletan (Paris, 1917), p. xii. l,u [J14a,5] 

"Les Fleurs du mal is dedicated to what Gautier claimed to be: magician of French 
letters, pure artist, impeccable writer — and this was a way of saying: Do not be 
deceived; what I venerate is the art and not the thought; my poems will have merit 
not because of their movement, passion, or thought, but because of their form." 
Andre Gide, Preface to Ch. B., Les Fleurs du mal, ed. Edouard Pelletan (Paris, 
1917), pp. xi-xii. m [J14a,6] 

"Now he quietly converses with each one of us." Andre Gide, Preface to Ch. B., 
Les Fleurs du mal, ed. E. Pelletan (Paris, 1917), p. xv. IB [ J14a,7] 

Lemaitrc in his article "Baudelaire," published originally in the "Feuilleton 
Dramatique" section of Le Journal des debuts, and written on the occasion of 
Crepet's edition of the Oeuvres posthumes et Correspondances inedites: "Worst of 
all, I sense that the unhappy man is perfectly incapable of developing these sibyl- 
line notes. The pensees of Baudelaire are most often only a sort of painful and 
pretentious stammering. . . . One cannot imagine a less philosophical mind." Jules 
Lemaitre, Les Contemporains, 4th series (Paris, 1895), p. 21 ("Baudelaire"). 
Brooding! <See J55a,l>. [ J15,l] 

After Calcutta. "On his return, he enters into possession of his patrimony, seventy 
thousand francs. Within two years, he has spent half of it. . . . For the next twenty 
years, he lives on the income provided by the remaining thirty-live thousand 
francs. . . . Now, during these twenty years, he runs up no more than ten thousand 
francs in new debts. Under these conditions, as you can imagine, he couldn't have 
indulged very often in Neronian orgies!" Jules Lemaitre, Les Contemporains, 4th 
series (Paris, 1895), p. 27. [J15.2] 

Bourget draws a comparison between Leonardo and Baudelaire: "We are drawn 
irresistibly to prolonged meditation on the enigma of this painter, of this poet. On 

being studiously contemplated, the enigma surrenders its secret." Paul Bourget, 
Essais de psychologie contemporaine, vol. 1 (Paris, 1901), p. 4 ("Baudelaire"). 


"He excels at beginning a poem with words of unforgettable solemnity, at once 
tragic and rueful: 'What does it matter to me that you are wise? / Be lovely — and 
be sad! . . . ' Elsewhere: "Sudden as a knife you thrust / into my sorry heart. . . . ' 
And elsewhere: "Pensive as cattle resting on the beach, / they are staring out to 
sea. . . ."' Paul Bourget, Essais de psychologie contemporaine, vol. 1 (Paris, 
1901), pp. 3-4. ra [J15.4] 

Bourget sees in Benjamin Constant, Amiel, and Baudelaire three kindred spirits, 
intellects stamped by the esprit d' analyse, types determined by decadence. The 
detailed appendix to "Baudelaire" is concerned with Constant's Adolphe. To- 
gether with the spirit of analysis, Bourget considers enmu an element of deca- 
dence. The third and last chapter of his essay on Baudelaire, "Theorie de la 
decadence," develops this idea with reference to the late Roman Empire. [ J15,5] 

1849 or 1850: Baudelaire draws from memory the head of Blanqui. See Philippe 
Soupault, Baudelaire (Paris <1931>), illustration on p. 15. [ J15,6] 

"It is all a harmony of artifices, of deliberate contradictions. Let us try to note 
some of these. Realism and idealism are mingled. Along with description that takes 
extravagant pleasure in the most dismal details of physical reality there is, at the 
same time, refined expression of ideas and beliefs that exceed the immediate im- 
pression made on us by bodies — There is a union of the most profound sensuality 
with Christian asceticism. 'A horror of life, and an ecstatic joy in life,' writes 
Baudelaire somewhere."' 1 . . . There is also, speaking of love, the combination of 
adoration and contempt for woman. . . . Woman is seen as a slave, as an ani- 
mal, . . . yet to her the same homage, the same prayers are addressed as to the 
immaculate Virgin. Or rather, she is seen as the universal trap . . . and worshipped 
for her deadly power. And that is not all: even as one seeks to render the most 
ardent passion, one also labors to find for it . . . the most unexpected form . . . — 
that is, what bespeaks the greatest sang-froid and even absence of passion. . . . 
One believes, or one pretends to believe, in the devil; he is envisaged by turns, or 
simultaneously, as the Father of Evil and as the great Loser and great Victim; and 
one delights in proclaiming one's impiety in the language of . . . the faithful. 'Pro- 
gress' is cursed; the industrial civilization of the century is execrated, . . . and, at 
the same time, the poet revels in the special color and brilliancy this civilization 
has brought to human life. . . . Such, I believe, is the basic intent of Baudelairism: 
always to unite two opposed orders of feeling . . . and, at bottom, two divergent 
conceptions of the world and of life — the Christian and the other, or, if you like, 
the past and the present. It is a masterpiece of the Will (like Baudelaire, I capital- 
ize), the last word in inventiveness in the realm of feeling." Jules Lemaitre, Les 
Contemporains, 4th series (Paris, 1895), pp. 28-31 ("Baudelaire"). [ J15a,l] 

Lemaitre observes that Baudelaire really did create a poncif, a cliche, as he set out 
to do. [J15a,2] 

"The bloody apparatus of destruction" — where is this phrase in Baudelaire? In 
"La Destruction." 115 [ J15a,3] 

"You could put him down as the perfect embodiment of the 'Parisian pessimist,' 
two words which earlier would have jarred on being coupled." Paul Bourget, 
Essais de psychologie contemporaine, vol. 1 (Paris, 1901), p. 14. [ J15a,4] 

Baudelaire had briefly considered reproducing, as the frontispiece to the second 
edition of Les Flews, a dance of death by H. Langlois. [J15a,5] 

"Three different men inhabit this man at one and the same time. . . . These three 
men are all quite modern, and more modern still is their synthesis. The crisis of 
religious faith, the city life of Paris, and the scientific spirit of the age . . . are so 
thoroughly allied here as to appear inseparable. . . . Faith has died out, whereas 
mysticism, though intellectually discredited, still permeates the sensibility. . . . We 
could note . . . the use of liturgical terminology to celebrate sensual pleasure ... or 
that curious work of 'prose' in decadent Latin style which he entitled 'Franciscae 
meae laudes.' . . . On the other hand, his libertine tastes came from Paris. Every- 
where in his . . . poems is a backdrop of Parisian vice, as well as a backdrop of 
Catholic ritual. He has obviously penetrated — and with hair-raising experiences, 
we may be sure — the most wretched strata of this unchaste city. He has eaten at 
common dinner tables beside painted women whose mouths drip blood through 
masks of ceruse. He has slept in brothels, and has known the rancor of broad 
daylight illuminating, along with the faded curtains , the still more faded face of the 
woman-for-hire. He has sought out . . . the unthinking spasm that . . . cures the 
mal de penser. And, at the same time, he has stopped and chatted at every street- 
corner in town. . . . He has led the life of the literary man, . . . and he has . . . 
whetted the blade of his spirit where that of others would have been dulled." Paul 
Bourget, Essais de psychologie contemporaine, vol. 1 (Paris, 1901), pp. 7-9 
("Baudelaire"). [J 16,1] 

Riviere provides a sequence of felicitous glosses on Baudelaire's poetic proce- 
dure: "Strange procession of words! Sometimes like a weariness of the voice, . . . 
an utterance full of frailty: 'I dream of new flowers, but who can tell / if this 
sordid swamp of mine affords / the mystic nourisliment on which they thrive [qui 
ferait leur vigueur].' Or: 'a favoring Goddess makes the desert bloom [Cybele, qui 
les aime, augmente ses verdures]. . . .' Like those who feel themselves completely 
in command of what they want to say, he seeks at first the most remote of terms; 
he then invites their approach, conciliates them, and infuses them with a quality 
you would not have thought could be theirs. . . . Such poetiy cannot be the 
product of inspiration. . . . And just as the unfolding thought . . . slowly breaks 
free of the obscurity in which it began, so the poetic trajectory retains a certain 

slowness from its long virtuality: 'How sweet the greenish light of your elongated 
eyes.' . . . Every one of Baudelaire's poems is a movement. . . . Each constitutes 
some particular phrase, question, reminder, invocation, or dedication, which has 
a specific direction." Jacques Riviere, Etudes (Paris), pp. 14-18. 80 [ J16.2] 

Frontispiece (by Rops) to the collection of Baudelaire's poems entitled Les Epaves 
<Wreckage>. It presents a multifaceted allegory. — Plan to use an etching by Brac- 
quemond as the frontispiece to the (second edition of> Les Fleurs du mal. Baude- 
laire describes it: "A skeleton turning into a tree, with legs and ribs forming the 
trunk, the arms stretched out to make a cross and bursting into leaves and buds, 
sheltering several rows of poisonous plants in little pots, lined up as if in a gar- 
dener's hothouse."" 7 [ J16,3] 

Curious notion of Soupault's: "Almost all of the poems are more or less directly 
inspired by a print or a painting. . . . Can it be said that he sacrificed to fashion? 
He dreaded being alone. . . . His weakness ohliged him to look for things to lean 
on." Philippe Soupault, Baudelaire (Paris <1931>), p. 64. [ J16a,l] 

"In the years of his maturity and resignation, he never spoke a word of regret or 
complaint about his childhood." Arthur Holitscher, "Charles Baudelaire," Die 
Literatur, vol. 12, pp. 14—15. [ J16a,2] 

"These images ... do not aim to caress our imagination; they are distant and 
studied, the way a voice sounds when it emphasizes something. . . . Like a word 
spoken in our ear when we least expected it, the poet is suddenly hard hy: 'You 
remember? You remember what I'm saying? Where did we see that together, we 
who don't even know each other?" Jacques Riviere, Etudes (Paris), pp. 18-19. 


"Baudelaire understood the clairvoyance of the heart that does not acknowledge 
all it experiences. ... It is a hesitation, a holding back, a modest gaze." Jacques 
Riviere, Etudes (Paris), p. 21. [J16a,4] 

"Lines of verse so perfect, so measured, that at first one hesitates to grant them all 
their meaning. A hope stirs for a minute — douht as to their profundity. But one 
need only wait." Jacques Riviere, Etudes (Paris), p. 22. [J16a,5] 

On Baudelaire's "Crepuscule du matin" (Twilight of Daybreak): "Each line of 
"Crepuscule du matin" — without stridency, with devotion — evokes a misfortune." 
Jacques Riviere, Etudes (Paris), p. 29. [ J16a,6] 

"The devotion of a heart moved to ecstasy by weakness. . . . Though he speaks of 
the most horrible things, the fierceness of his respect lends him a subtle decency." 
Jacques Riviere, Etudes (Paris), pp. 27-28. [J16a,7] 

According to Champfleury, Baudelaire would have nought up all the unsold items 
from the Salon of 1845. [J16a,8] 

"Baudelaire knew the art of transforming his features as well as any escaped 
convict." <Jules> Champfleury, Souvenirs et portraits de jeunesse (Paris, 1872), 
p. 135 ("Rencontre de Baudelaire"). — Courhet complained of the trouble he had 
completing the portrait of Baudelaire ; the subject looked different from onedayto 
the next. [J16a,9] 

Baudelaire's liking for porter. [ J16a,10] 

"Baudelaire's favorite flowers were neither daisy, carnation, nor rose; he would 
break into raptures at the sight of those thick-leaved plants that look like vipers 
ahout to fall on their prey, or spiny hedgehogs. Tormented forms, bold forms — 
such was this poet's ideal." Champlleury, Souvenirs et portraits de jeunesse 
(Paris, 1872), p. 143. [J16a,ll] 

Gide, in his preface to Les Fleurs du mal, lays emphasis on the "centrifugal and 
disintegrating" force which Baudelaire, like Dostoevsky, recognized in himself and 
which he felt to he in opposition to his productive concentration (p. xvii). 8 " 

: J i7,i: 

"This taste for Boileau and Racine was not an affectation in Baudelaire. . . . There 
is sometliing more in Les Fleurs du mal than the 'thrill of the new'; there is a 
return to traditional French verse. . . . Even in his nervous malaise, Baudelaire 
retains a certain sanity. " Remy de Gourmont, Promenades litteraires, 2nd series 
(Paris, 1906), pp. 85-86 ("Baudelaire et le songe d'Athalie"). [ J17,2] 

Poe (as cited in Remy de Gourmont, Promenades litteraires [Paris, 1904.], p. 371: 
"Marginalia sur Edgar Poe et sur Baudelaire"): "The assurance of the wrong or 
error of any action is often the one unconquerahle force which impels us, and 
alone impels us, to its prosecution."" 9 [J17,3] 

Construction of "L'Echec de Baudelaire" (Baudelaire's defeat>, by Rene La- 
forgue. As a child, Baudelaire is supposed to have witnessed the coitus of his nurse 
or his mother with her (first or second?) husband; he would find himself in the 
position of third person in a love relationship and would settle down in that posi- 
tion; he would become a voyeur and frequent bordellos mainly as a voyeur; owing 
to this same fixation on the visual, he would hecome a critic and experience a need 
for ohjectivity, "so that nothing is 'lost to view.'" lie would helong to a clearly 
defined category of patients: "For them, to see means to soar above everything, 
like eagles, in complete security, and to realize a sort of omnipotence by identifica- 
tion at once with the man and with the woman. . . . These are the people who then 
develop that fatal taste for the ahsolute . . . , and who, taking refuge in the domain 

of pure imagination, lose the use of their hearts" (L'Echec de Baudelaire [Paris, 
1931], pp. 201, 204). 911 [J17.4] 

"Baudelaire loved Aupick without being aware of it, and . . . his reason for con- 
tinually provoking his stepfather was in order to be loved by him. ... If Jeanne 
Duval played a part in the poet's emotional life analogous to that played by 
Aupick, we can understand why Baudelaire was . . . sexually possessed by her. 
And so . . . this union stood, rather, for a homosexual union, in which Baudelaire 
chiefly played the passive role — that of the woman." Rene Laforgue, L'Echec de 
Baudelaire (Paris, 1931), pp. 175, 177. 91 [ J17,5] 

His friends sometimes called Baudelaire "Monseigneur Brummell." [J17,6] 

On the compulsion to lie, as seen in Baudelaire: "The direct and spontaneous 
expression of a truth becomes, for these subtle and tormented consciences, the 
ecpiiivalent of success ... in incest; success, that is to say, in a sphere in which it 
can be realized simply by 'good sense.' . . . For in those cases where normal sexu- 
ality is repressed, good sense is fated to lack an object." Rene Laforgue, L'Echec 
de Baudelaire (Paris, 1931), p. 87." 2 [J17.7] 

Anatole France — Lu Vie litteraire, vol. 3 (Paris, 1891) — on Baudelaire: "His leg- 
end, created by his friends and admirers, abounds in marks of bad taste" (p. 20). 
"The most wretched woman encountered at night in the shadows of a disreputahle 
alley takes on, in his mind, a tragic grandeur: seven demons are in them [ ! ] and the 
whole mystical sky looks down on this sinner whose soul is in peril. He tells himself 
that the vilest kisses resound through all eternity, and he hrings to hear on this 
momentary encounter eighteen centuries of devilishness" (p. 22). "He is attracted 
to women only to the point necessary for irrevocable loss of his soul. He is never a 
lover, and he would not even be a debauchee if debauchery were not superlatively 
impious. . . . He would have nothing to do with women if he were not hoping 
that, through them, he could offend God and make the angels weep" (p. 22). 


"At hottom, he had but half a faith. Only his spirit was completely Christian. His 
heart and intellect remained empty. There is a story that one day a naval officer, 
one of his friends, showed him a manitou that he had brought hack from Africa, a 
monstrous little head carved from a piece of wood by a poor hlack man. — Tt is 
awfully ugly,' says the officer, and he threw it away disdainfully. — 'Take care,' 
Baudelaire said in an anxious tone, 'lest it prove the true god!' They were the most 
profound words he ever uttered. He helieved in unknown gods — not least for the 
pleasure of blaspheming." Anatole France, La Vie litteraire, vol. 3 (Paris, 1891), 
p. 23 ("Charles Baudelaire"). [J17a,2] 

Letter to Poulet-Malassis of Fehruary 18, 1860. 


"The hypothesis of Baudelaire's P.G. <paralyse generaley has persisted for half a 
century and still reigns in certain quarters. Nevertheless, it is based on a gross and 
demonstrable error and is without any foundation in fact. . . . Baudelaire did not 
die from P.G. but from softening of the brain, the consequence of a stroke . . . and 
of a hardening of the cerebral arteries." Louis-Antoine-Justine Caubert, La 
Nevrose de Baudelaire (Bordeaux, 1930), pp. 42—43. The argument against gen- 
eral paralysis is made, likewise in a treatise, by Raymond Trial, La Maladie de 
Baudelaire (Paris, 1926), p. 69. But he sees the brain disorder as a consequence of 
syphilis, whereas Caubert believes that syphilis has not been conclusively estab- 
lished in Baudelaire's case (see p. 46); he cites Remond and Voivenel, Le Genie 
litteraire (Paris, 1912), p. 41: "Baudelaire was . . . the victim of sclerosis of the 
cerebral arteries." [ J17a,4] 

In his essay "Le Sadismechez Baudelaire," published in La Chronique medicale of 
November 15, 1902, Cabanes defends the thesis that Baudelaire was a "sadistic 
madman" (p. 727). [J18,l] 

Du Camp on Baudelaire's voyage "to the Indies": "He arranged supplies of live- 
stock for the English army . . . , and rode about on elephants while composing 
verse." Du Camp adds in a note: "I have been told that this anecdote is spurious; I 
have it from Baudelaire himself, and I have no reason to doubt its veracity, though 
it may perhaps be faulted for a surplus of imagination." Maxime Du Camp, Souve- 
nirs litteraires, vol. 2 (Paris, 1906), p. 60. [ J18,2] 

Indicative of the reputation that preceded Baudelaire before he had published 
anything of importance is this remark by Gautier: "I fear that with Baudelaire it 
will be as it once was with Petrus Borel. In our younger days, we used to say: Hugo 
has only to sit and wait; as soon as Petrus publishes something, he will disap- 
pear. . . . Today, the name of Baudelaire is brandished before us; we are told that 
when he publishes his poems, Musset, Laprade, and I will dissolve into thin air. I 
don't believe it for a moment. Baudelaire will burn out just as Petrus did." Cited 
in Maxime Du Camp, Souvenirs litteraires, vol. 2 (Paris, 1906), pp. 61-62. 


"As a writer, Baudelaire had one great defect, of which he had no inkling: he was 
ignorant. What he knew, he knew well; but he knew very little. History, physiol- 
ogy, archaeology, philosophy all eluded him. . . . The external world scarcely in- 
terested him; he saw it perhaps, but assuredly he never studied it." Maxime Du 
Camp, Souvenirs litteraires, vol. 2 (Paris, 1906), p. 65. ( J18,4] 

From the evaluations of Baudelaire by his teachers at the Lycee Louis-le-Grand: 
"Ready mind. A few lapses in taste" (in Rhetoric). "Conduct sometimes rather 
unruly. This student, as he himself admits, seems convinced that history is per- 
fectly useless" (in History). — Letter of August 11, 1839, to his stepfather, after 
earning his baccalaureate: "I did rather poorly in my examinations, except for 

Latin and Greek — in which I did very well. And this is what saved me."" Charles 
Baudelaire, Vers latins, ed. Jules Mouquet (Paris, 1933), pp. 17, 18, 26. [J18,5] 

According to <Josephin> Peladan, "Theorie plastique de l'androgyne" (Mercure 
de France, 21 [1910], p. 650), the androgyne appears in Rossetti and Burne- 
Jones. [J18,6] 

Ernest Seilliere, Baudelaire (Paris, 1931), p. 262, on "the death of artists": "Re- 
reading his work, I tell myself that, were he making his debut as a writer now, not 
only would he not be singled out for distinction, hut he would be judged mal- 
adroit." [J18,7] 

Seilliere refers to the story "La Fanfarlo" as a document whose importance for 
Baudelaire's biography has not been sufficiently recognized <Baudelaire, p. 72>. 


"Baudelaire will keep to the end this intermittent awkwardness which was so 
foreign to the dazzling technique of a Hugo." Ernest Seilliere, Baudelaire, p. 72. 


Key passages on the unsuitability of passion in art: the second preface to Poe, the 
study of Gautier. 94 [J18a,2] 

The first lecture in Brussels was concerned with Gautier. Camdle Lemonnier com- 
pares it to a Mass celebrated in honor of the master. Baudelaire is said to have 
displayed, on this occasion, "the grave beauty of a cardinal of letters officiating at 
the altar of the Ideal." Cited in Seilliere, Baudelaire (Paris, 1931), p. 123. 


"In the drawing room on t he Place Royale, Baudelaire had himself introduced as 
a fervent disciple but . . . Hugo, ordinarily so skillful in sending away his visitors 
happy, did not understand the artificialiste character and t he exclusively Parisian 
predilections of the young man. . . . Their relations nonetheless remained cordial, 
Hugo having evidently not read the 'Salon de 1846'; and, in his 'Reflexions sur 
quelques-uns de mes contemporains' (Reflections on Some of My Contemporar- 
ies), Baudelaire showed himself very admiring, even rather perceptive, if without 
great profundity." Ernest Seilliere, Baudelaire (Paris, 1931), p. 129. [J18a,4] 

Baudelaire, reports Seilliere (p. 129), is supposed to have enjoyed strolling often 
along the Canal de l'Ourcq. [ J18a,5] 

About the Dufays — Baudelaire's forehears on his mother's side — nothing is 
known. [J18a,6] 

"In 1876, in an article entitled 'Chez feu mon maitrc' <At the Home of My Late 
Mentor>, Cladel would evoke . . . the macabre trait in the physiognomy of the poet. 

Never, according to this witness, . . . was he more forbidding than when he wanted 
to appear jovial; his voice took on a disquieting edge, while his vis comica made 
one shudder. On the pretext of exorcizing the evil spirits of his auditors, and with 
bursts of laughter piercing as sobs, he told them outrageous tales of trysts beyond 
the grave which froze the blood in their veins." Ernest Seilliere, Baudelaire 
(Paris, 1931), p. 150. [J18a,7] 

Where in Ovid is the passage in which it is said that the human face was made to 
mirror the stars? 35 [ J18a,8] 

Seilliere notes that the poems attributed apocryphally to Baudelaire were all 
necrophilic in character (p. 152). [ J18a,9] 

"Finally, as we know, the passional anomaly has a place in the art of Baudelaire, at 
least under one of its aspects, that of Lesbos; the other has not yet been made 
admissible by the progress of moral naturism." Ernest Seilliere, Baudelaire 
(Paris, 1931), p. 154. [ J18a,10] 

The sonnet "Quant a moi, si j'avais un beau pare plante d'if s" <As for me, if only 
I had a fine park, planted with yews>, 96 which Baudelaire apparently addressed to 
a young lady of Lyons some time around 1839-1840, is reminiscent, in its closing 
line — "And you know that too, my beauty, whose eyes are too shrewd" — of the 
last line of "A Une Passante." [ J 1 9 , 1 ] 

The piece "Vocations," in Spleen de Paris, is of great interest — particularly the 
account of the third child, who "lowered his voice: 'It certainly gives you a funny 
feeling not to be sleeping aJone, and to be in bed with your nurse, and in the 
dark. ... If you ever get the chance, try to do the same — you'll see!' / While he 
was talking, the eyes of the young author of this revelation had widened with a 
sort of stupefaction at what he was still feeling, and the light of the setting sun 
playing in his untidy red curls seemed to be lighting up a sulfurous aureole of 
passion." 97 The passage is as notable for Baudelaire's conception of the sinful as 
for the aura of public confessio. [J19,2] 

Baudelaire to his mother on January 11, 1858 (cited in Charles Baudelaire, Vers 
latins, ed. Mouquet [Paris, 1933], p. 130): "You haven't noticed that in Les Fleurs 
du mal there are two poems concerning you, or at least alluding to intimate details 
of our former life, going back to that time of your widowhood which left me with 
such strange and sad memories — one: 'Je n'ai pas oublie, voisine de la ville' 
(Neuilly), and the other, which follows it: 'La servante au grand coeur dont 
v«us etiez jalouse' (Mariette)? I left these poems without titles and without any 
further clarification, because I have a horror of prostituting intimate family 
matters " ,J11 [J19.3] 

Leconte cle Lisle's opinion that Baudelaire must have composed his poems by 
versifying a prose draft is taken up by Pierre Louys, Oeuvres completes, vol. 12 
(Paris, 1930), p. liii ("Suite a poetique"). Jules Mouquet comments on this view in 
Charles Baudelaire, Vers latins, introduction and notes by Jules Mouquet (Paris, 
1933), p. 131: "Leconte de Lisle and Pierre Louys, carried away by their antipa- 
thy to the Christian poet of Les Fleurs du mal, deny that he had any poetic 
gift! — Now, according to the testimony of friends of his youth, Baudelaire had 
started out by writing thousands of lines of fluent verse 'on any and every subject,' 
which he could hardly have done without 'thinking in verse.' He deliberately 
reined in this facility when . . . , at about the age of twenty-two, he began to write 
the poems which he entitled first Les Lesbiennes, then Les Limbes .... The Petits 
Poemes en prose . . . , in which the poet returns to themes he had already treated 
in verse, were composed at least ten years after Les Fleurs du mal. That Baude- 
laire had difficulty fashioning verse is a legend which he himself perhaps . . . 
helped spread." [J19.4] 

According to Raymond Trial, in La Maladie de Baudelaire (Paris, 1926), p. 20, 
recent research has shown that hereditary syphilis and acquired syphilis are not 
mutually exclusive. Thus, in Baudelaire's case, acquired syphilis would have 
joined with the hereditary strain transmitted by the father and manifest through 
hemiplegia in hoth sons and in his wife. [ J19a,l] 

Baudelaire, 1846: "If ever your flaneur's curiosity has landed you in a street 
hrawl, perhaps you will have felt the same delight as I have often felt to see a 
protector of the public's slumbers — a policeman or a municipal guard (the real 
army) — thumping a republican. And if so, like me, you will have said in your 
heart: 'Thump on, thump a little harder. . . . The man whom thou thumpest is an 
enemy of roses and of perfumes, and a maniac for utensils. He is the enemy of 
Watteau, the enemy of Raphael. " <, ' f Cited in R. Trial, La Maladie de Baudelaire 
(Paris, 1926), p. 51. [J19a,2] 

"Speak neither of opium nor of Jeanne Duval if you would criticize Les Fleurs du 
mal." Gilhert Maire, "La Personnalite de Baudelaire," Mercure de France, 21 
(January 16, 1910), p. 244. [J19a,3] 

"To conceive Baudelaire without recourse t o his hiography — this is the fundamen- 
tal object and final goal of our undertaking." Gilbert Maire, "La Personnalite de 
Baudelaire," Mercure de France, 21 (January 16, 1910), p. 244. [ J19a,4] 

"Jacques Crepet would like us to look on Baudelaire in such a way that the sincer- 
ity of his life would assure us of the value of his work, and that, sympathizing with 
the man, we would learn to love hoth life and work." Gilbert Maire, "La Person- 
nalite de Baudelaire," Mercure de France, 21 (Fehruary 1, 1910), p. 414. 


Maire writes (p. 417) that the "incomparable sensibility" of Barres was schooled 
on Baudelaire. [J19a,6] 

To Ancelle, 1865: "One can both possess a unique genius and be a fool. Victor 
Hugo has given us ample proof of that. . . . The Ocean itself tired of his com- 
pany." 1 " 1 [J19a,7] 

Poe: "T would not be able to love,' he will say quite clearly, 'did not death mix its 
breath with that of Beauty!" 101 Cited in Ernest Seilliere, Baudelaire (Paris, 1931), 
p. 229. The author refers to the time when, after the death of Mrs. Jane Stanard, 
the iifteen-year-old Poe would spend long nights in the graveyard, often in the 
rain, at the site of her grave. [J19a,8] 

Baudelaire to his mother, concerning Les Fleurs du mal: "This book . . . possesses 
... a beauty that is sinister and cold: it was created with fury and patience." 1112 


Letter from Ange Pechmeja to Baudelaire, February 1866. The writer expresses 
his admiration, in particular, for the sensuous interfusion in the poet's language. 
Sec Ernest Seilliere, Baudelaire (Paris, 1933), pp. 254-255. [ J19a,10] 

Baudelaire ascribes to Hugo an "interrogative" poetic character. [J20,l] 

There is probably a connection between Baudelaire's weakness of will and the 
abundance of power with which certain drugs under certain conditions endow 
the will. "Architecte de mes feeries / Je faisais, a ma volonte, / Sous un tunnel de 
pierreries / Passer un ocean dompte." 103 [ J20.2] 

Baudelaire's inner experiences: "Commentators have somewhat falsified the situ- 
ation ... in insisting overmuch on the theory of universal analogy, as formulated 
in the sonnet 'Correspondances,' while ignoring the reverie to which Baudelaire 
was inclined. . . . There were moments of depersonalization in his existence, mo- 
ments of self -forgetting and of communication with 'revealed paradises.' ... At 
the end of his life . . . , he abjured the dream, . . . blaming his moral shipwreck on 
his 'penchant for reverie.'" Albert Beguin, L'Ame romantique et le rive (Mar- 
seilles, 1937), vol. 2, pp. 401, 405. [ J20,3] 

In his hook Le Parnasse, Therive points to the decisive influence of painting and 
the graphic arts on a great many of Baudelaire's poems. He sees in this a charac- 
teristic feature of the Parnassian school. Moreover, he sees Baudelaire's poetry as 
an interpenetration of Parnassian and Symbolist tendencies. [ J20,4] 

"A propensity to imagine even nature through the vision that others have had of it. 
'La Geante' comes out of Michelangelo; 'Reve parisien,' out of Simone Martini; 'A 

Une Madone' is a Baroque statue in a Spanish chapel." Andre Therive, Le Par- 
nasse (Paris, 1929), p. 101. [J20,5] 

Therive finds in Baudelaire "certain gaucheries, which, today, one can't help 
thinking might be traits of the sublime." Andre Therive, Le Parnasse (Paris, 
1929), p. 99. [J20.6] 

In an article entitled "Une Anecdote controuvee sur Baudelaire" <A Fabricated 
Anecdote about Baudelaire), in the Fortnightly Review section of the Mercure de 
France (May 15, 1921), Baudelaire's alleged sojourn and activity with a conserva- 
tive newspaper in Chateauroux is disputed by Ernest Gaubert, who examined all 
the periodicals from the town, and who traces the anecdote back to A. Ponroy (a 
friend of Baudelaire's who had family in Chateauroux), from whom Crepet got it. 
Mercure de France, 148, pp. 281-282. [ J20.7] 

Daudet, in an inspired phrase, speaks of Baudelaire's "trap-door disposition — 
which is also that of Prince Hamlet." Leon Daudet, Les Pelerins d 'Emrmils (Cour- 
rier des Pays-Bas, 4) (Paris <1928>), p. 101 ("Baudelaire: Le Malaise et l'aura'"). 


"Theme . . . of . . . the affirmation of a mysterious presence at the back of things, 
as in the depths of the soul — the presence of Eternity. Hence the obsession with 
timepieces, and the need to break out of the confines of one's own life through the 
immense prolongation of ancestral memory and of former lives." Albert Beguin, 
L'Ame romantique et le reve (Marseilles, 1937), vol. 2, p. 403. [J20a,l] 

Roger Allard in a polemic against the introduction to L'Oeuvre poetique de 
Charles Baudelaire-, edited by Guillaume Apollinaire (Paris: Bibliotheque des 
Curieux). In this introduction, Apollinaire advances the thesis that Baudelaire, 
while inaugurating the modern spirit, played little part in its development; his 
influence is nearly spent. Baudelaire is said to be a cross between Laclos and Poe. 
Allard replies: "In our view, two writers profoundly influenced Baudelaire, or 
rather two books. . . . One is . . . Le Diable amoureux <The Devil in Love>, hy 
Cazotte; the other, Diderot's La Religieuse <The Nun). Two notes at this point: 
"(1) M. Apollinaire could not do otherwise than name the author of Le Diable 
amoureux in a note concerning the last line of the sonnet 'Le Possede': 'One would 
prohably not go wrong in taking Cazotte as the hyphen that had the honor of 
uniting, in Baudelaire's mind, the spirit of the Revolution's writers with that of 
Edgar Poe.' (2) The poem accompanying a letter from Baudelaire to Sainte-Beuve 
can he found in the edition furnished by M. Apollinaire: '. . . with eyes darker and 
more hlue than the Nun whose / sad and ohscene story is known to all. . . . ,m A 
few lines later, we come upon the first draft of a stanza of 'Leshos. '" Roger Allard, 
Baudelaire et "V Esprit nou veau" (Paris, 1918), p. 10. [J20a,2] 

Leon Dauclet, in "Baudelaire: Le Malaise et Faura,'" asks whether Baudelaire did 
not in some degree play Hamlet opposite Aupick and his mother. [ J20a,3] 

Vigny wrote "Le Mont des oliviers" partly in order to refute de Maistre, by 
whom he was deeply influenced. [J20a,4] 

Jules Romains (Les Hommes de bonne volonte, book 2 , Crime de Quinette (Paris, 
1932>, p. 171) compares the flanenr to Baudelaire's "rugged swimmer reveling in 
the waves." 105 [J 20a, 5] 

Compare "the secret harvest of the heart" ("Le Soleil") with "Nothing ever 
grows, / once the heart is harvested" ("Semper eadem"). 106 These formulations 
have a bearing on Baudelaire's heightened artistic consciousness: the blossom 
makes the dilettante; the fruit, the master. [ J20a,6] 

The essay on Dupont was commissioned by Dupont's publisher. [J21 ,1] 

Poem to Sarah, around 1839. It contains this stanza: 

Though to get some shoes she sold her soul, 
The good Lord would laugh if with this wretch 
I struck a haughty pose like some Tartuffe, 

I who sell my thought and would he an author. 107 [J 21 ,2] 

"Le Mauvais Vitrier" — to be compared with Lafcadio's acte gratuit (gratuitous 
act>. 10S [J21,3] 

"When, your heart on fire with valor and with hope, 
you whipped the moneylenders out of that place — 
you were master then! But now, has not remorse 
pierced your side even deeper than the spear? 109 

That is, remorse at having let pass so fine an opportunity for proclaiming the 
dictatorship of the proletariat!" Thus inanely comments Seilliere {^Baudelaire 
[Paris, 1933],> p. 193) on "Le Reniement de Saint Pierre." [J2 1,4] 

Apropos these lines from "Lesbos" — "Of Sappho who died on the day of her 
blasphemy, / . . . insulting the rite and the designated worship" 110 — Seilliere 
(p. 216) remarks: "It is not hard to see that the 'god,' the object of this 'august' 
religion, whose practice consists in blaspheming and in insulting traditional rites, 
is none other than Satan." Isn't the blasphemy, in this case, the love for a young 
man? [J21,5] 

From the obituary notice, "Charles Baudelaire," by Jules Valles, which appeared 
September 7, 1867, in La Rue: "Will he have ten years of immortality?" (p. 190). 
"These are, moreover, bad times for the biblicists of the sacristy or of the cabaret! 

Ours is an age of gaiety and distrust, one that never long suspends the recital of 
nightmares or the spectacle of ecstasies. It has now become clear that no one else 
had enough foresight to undertake such a campaign at the period when Baude- 
laire began his" (pp. 190-191). "Why didn't he become a professor of rhetoric or 
a dealer in scapulars, this didactician who imitated the blasted and downtrodden, 
this classicist who wanted to shock Pradhomme, but who, as Dusolier has said, 
was only a hysterical Boileau who went to play Dante among the cafes" (p. 192). 
Notwithstanding the resounding error in its appreciation of the importance of 
Baudelaire's work, the obituary contains some perceptive passages, particularly 
those concerned with the habitus of Baudelaire: "He had in him something of the 
priest, the old lady, and the ham actor. Above all, the ham actor" (p. 189). The 
piece is reprinted in Andre Billy, Les Ecrivains de combat (Paris, 1931); originally 
appeared in La Situation. [ J21,6] 

Key passages on the stars in Baudelaire (ed. Le Dantec) : "Night! you'd please me 
more without these stars / which speak a language I know all too well — / 1 long 
for darkness, silence, nothing there . . ." ("Obsession," <vol. 1,> p. 88). — Ending of 
"Les Promesses d'un visage" (<vol. 1,> p. 170): the "enormous head of hair — / 
. . . which in darkness rivals you, O Night, / deep and spreading starless 
Night!" — "Yet neither sun nor moon appeared, / and no horizon paled" ("Reve 
parisien," <vol. 1,> p. 116). — "What if the waves and winds are black as ink" ("Le 
Voyage," <vol. 1,> p. 149). — Compare, however, "Les Yeux de Berthe," the only 
weighty exception (<vol. 1,> p. 169), and, in another perspective, the constellation 
of the stars with the aether, as it appears in "Delphine et Hippolyte" (<vol. 1,> 
p. 160) and in "Le Voyage" (<vol. 1,> p. 146 <sec. 3>). On the other hand, highly 
characteristic that "Le Crepuscule du soir" makes no mention of stars. 111 [J21a,l] 

"Le Mort joyeux" could represent a reply to Poe's fantasies of decomposition: 
"and let me know if one last twinge is left. . . ."" 2 [J21a,2] 

A sardonic accent marks the spot where it is said of the stars: "decent planets, at 
a time like this, / renounce their vigilance — " ("Sepulture")." 3 [J21a,3] 

Baudelaire introduces into the lyric the figure of sexual perversion that seeks its 
objects on the street. What is most characteristic, however, is that he does this 
with the phrase "trembling like a fool" in one of his most perfect love poems, "A 
Une Passante."" 1 [J21a,4] 

Figure of the big city whose inhabitants are frightened of cathedrals: "Vast 
woods, you terrify me like cathedrals" ("Obsession")." 5 [J21a,5] 

"Le Voyage" (sec. 7): "Come and revel in the sweet delight / of days where it is 
always afternoon!" 115 Is it too bold to see in the emphasis on this time of day 
something peculiar to the big city? [J21a,6] 

The hidden figure that is the key to "Le Balcon": the night which holds the lovers 
in its embrace as, after day's departure, they dream of the dawn, is starless — 
"The night solidified into a wall." 117 [J2 la, 7] 

To the glance that encounters the "Passante" contrast George's poem "Von einer 
Begegnung" <Encounter>: 

My glances drew me from the path I seek 

And crazed with magic, mad to clasp, they trailed 
The slender bow sweet limbs in walking curved, 
And wet with longing then, they fell and failed 
Before into your own they boldly swerved. 

Stefan George, Hymnen; Pilgerfkhrten; Algabal (Berlin, 1922), pp. 22-23. 118 


"'The unexampled ogle of a whore / glinting toward you like a silver ray / the 
wavering moon releases on the lake':" 9 so begins the last poem. And into this 
extraordinary stare, which brings uncontrollable tears to the eyes of him who 
meets it without defenses, Berg looked long and avidly. For him, however, as for 
Baudelaire, the mercenary eye became a legacy of the prehistoric world. The 
arc-light moon of the big city shines for him like something out of the age of 
hetaerism. He needs only to have it reflected, as on a lake, and the banal reveals 
itself as the distant past; the nineteenth-century commodity betrays its mythic 
taboo. It was in such a spirit that Berg composed Lulu." Wiesengrund-Adorno, 
"Konzertarie 'Der Wein,'" in Willi Reich, Alban Berg, with Berg's own writings 
and with contributions by Theodor Wiesengrund-Adorno and Ernst Krenek (Vi- 
enna, Leipzig, Zurich <1937>), p. 106. [J22,2] 

What's with the dilation of the sky in Meryon's engraving? [ J22,3] 

"Le Crepuscule du matin" occupies a crucial position in Le s Flews du mal. The 
morning wind disperses the clouds of myth. Human beings and their affairs are 
exposed to view. The prerevolutionary dawn glimmers in this poem. (In fact, it 
was probably composed after 1850.) [ J22,4] 

The antithesis between allegory and myth has to be clearly developed. It was 
owing to the genius of allegory that Baudelaire did not succumb to the abyss of 
myth that gaped beneath his feet at every step. [J22,5] 

'"The depths being the multitudes,' Victor Hugo's solitude becomes a solitude 
overrun, a swarming solitude." Gabriel Bounoure, "Abimes de Victor Hugo," 
Mesures, (July 15, 1936), p. 39. The author underscores the element of passivity 
in Hugo's experience of the crowd. [J22,6] 

"Nachtgedanken" <Night Thoughts>, by Goethe: "I pity you, unhappy stars, / who 
are so beautiful and shine so splendidly, / gladly guiding the struggling sailor with 
your light, / and yet have no reward from gods or men: / for you do not love, you 
have never known love! / Ceaselessly by everlasting hours / your dance is led 
across the wide heavens. / How vast a journey you have made already / since I, 
reposing in my sweetheart's arms, / forgot my thoughts of you and of the mid- 

The following argument — which dates from a period in which the decline of 
sculpture had become apparent, evidently prior to the decline of painting — is 
very instructive. Baudelaire makes exactly the same point about sculpture from 
the perspective of painting as is made today about painting from the perspective 
of film. "A picture, however, is only what it wants to be; there is no other way of 
looking at it than on its own terms. Painting has but one point of view; it is 
exclusive and absolute, and therefore the painter's expression is much more 
forceful." Baudelaire, Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 128 ("Salon de 1846"). Just before this 
(pp. 127-128): "The spectator who moves around the figure can choose a hun- 
dred different points of view, except the right one." i2l <Compare> J4,7 [J22a,2] 

On Victor Hugo, around 1840: "At that same period, he began to realize that if 
man is the solitary animal, the solitary man is a man of the crowds [p. 39]. ... It 
was Victor Hugo who gave Baudelaire that sense of the irradiant life of the crowd, 
and who taught him that 'multitude and solitude [are] equal and interchangeable 
terms for the poet who is active and productive. . . .' l22 Nevertheless, what a dif- 
ference between the solitude which the great artist of spleen chose for himself in 
Brussels in order 'to gain an inalienable individual tranquillity' and the solitude of 
the magus of Jersey, haunted at that same moment by shadowy apparitions! . . . 
Hugo's solitude is not an envelope, a Noli me tangere, a concentration of the 
individual in his difference. It is, rather, a participation in the cosmic mystery, an 
entry into the realm of primitive forces" (pp. 40-41). Gabriel Bounoure, "Ahlmes 

From Le Collier des jours <The Necklace of Days>, vol. 1, cited hy Remy de Gour- 
mont in Judith Gautier (Paris, 1904), p. 15: "A ring of the hell interrupted us and 
then, without a sound, a very singular person entered the room and made a slight 
how of the head. I had the impression of a priest without his cassock. 'Ah, here's 
Baldelarius!' cried my father, extending his hand to the newcomer." Baudelaire 
of fers a gloomy jest on the subject of Judith's nickname, "Ouragan" <IIurricane>. 

"At the cafe called the Divan Le Peletier, Theodore de Banville would see Baude- 
laire sitting liercely, 'like an angry Goethe' (as he says in a poem), next to 'the 
gentle Asselineau.'" Leon Daudet, Le Stupide XIX' Siecle (Paris, 1922), pp. 139- 

night!" 120 


de Victor Hugo," Mesures (July 15, 1936), pp. 39-41. 





Apropos of "The greathearted servant ..." and the end of "Le Voyage" ("• 
Death, old captain . . ."), L. Daudet speaks of a Ronsardian flight (in Le Stupide 
XIX" Siecle, p. 140). [J23,3] 

"My father had caught a glimpse of Baudelaire, and he told me about his impres- 
sion: a bizarre and atrabilious prince among boors." Leon Daudet, Le Stupide 
XIX" Siecle (Paris, 1922), p. 141. [J23,4] 

Baudelaire calls Hugo a "genius without borders." 123 [J23,5] 

It is presumably no accident that, in searching for a poem by Hugo to provide 
with a pendant, Baudelaire fastened on one of the most banal of the banal — "Les 
Fantomes." In this sequence of six poems, the first begins: "How many maidens 
fair, alas! I've seen /Fade and die." The third: "One form above all, — 'twas a 
Spanish maid." And further on: "What caused her death? Balls, dances — daz- 
zling balls; / They filled her soul with ecstasy and joy." This is followed by the 
story of how she caught cold one morning, and eventually sank into the grave. 
The sixth poem resembles the close of a popular ballad: "O maidens, whom such 
festive fetes decay! / Ponder the story of this Spanish maid." 12 * [ J23,6] 

With Baudelaire's "La Voix" <The Voice> compare Victor Hugo's "Ce qu'on 
entend sur la montagne" <What Is Heard on the Mountain). The poet gives ear 
to the world storm: 

Soon with that voice confusedly combined, 
Two other voices, vague and veiled, I find. 

And seemed each voice, though mixed, distinct to be, 
As two cross-currents 'neath a stream you see. 

One from the seas — triumphant, blissful song! 
\foice of the waves, which talked themselves among; 
The other, which from the earth to heaven ran, 
Was full of sorrow — the complaint of man. 

The poem takes, as its object, the dissonance of the second voice, which is set off 
against the harmony of the first. Ending: 

Why God... 

Joins in the fatal hymn since earth began, 

The song of Nature, and the cries of man? 125 [ J23,7] 

Isolated observations from Barbey d'Aurevilly's "M. Charles Baudelaire": "I 
sometimes imagine . . . that, if Timon of Athens had had the genius of Archilochus, 
he would have been able to write in this manner on human nature and to insult it 
while rendering it!" (p. 381). "Conceive, if you will, a language more plastic than 
poetic, a language hewn and shaped like hronze and stone, in which each phrase 
has its volutes and fluting" (p. 378). "This profound dreamer . . . asked himself 

, . . what would become of poetry in passing through a head organized, for exam- 
ple, like that of Caligula or Heliogabalus" (p. 376). — "Thus, like the old Goethe 
who transformed himself into a seller of Turkish pastilles in his Divan . . . , the 
author of Les Fleurs du mal turned villainous, blasphemous, impious for the sake 
of his thought" (pp. 375-376). < Jules> Barbey cl'Aurevilly, XIX Siecle: Les Oeu- 
vres et les homines, vol. 3, Les Poetes (Paris, 1862). [ J23a,l] 

"A critic (M. Thierry, in Le Moniteur) made the point recently in a very fine 
appreciation: to discover the parentage of this implacable poetry . . . one must go 
back to Dante . . . !" (p. 379). This analogy Barbey makes emphatically his own: 
"Dante's muse looked dreamily on the Inferno; that of Les Fleurs du mal breathes 
it in through inflamed nostrils, as a horse inhales shrapnel" (p. 380). Barbey 
d'Aurevilly, XIX C Siecle: Les Oeuvres et les hommes, vol. 3, Les Poetes (Paris, 
1862). [J23a,2] 

Barbey d'Aurevilly on Dupont: "Cain triumphs over the gentle Abel in this man's 
talent and thinking — the Cain who is coarse, ravenous, envious, and fierce, and 
who has gone to the cities to consume the dregs of accumulated resentments and 
share in the false ideas that triumph there!" Barbey d'Aurevilly, Le XIX" Siecle: 
Les Oeuvres et les hmmmes, vol. 3, Les Poetes (Paris, 1862), p. 242 ("M. Pierre 
Dupont"). [J23a,3] 

A manuscript of Goethe's "Nachtgedanken" bears the notation, "Modeled on the 
Greek." [J23a,4] 

At the age of eleven, Baudelaire experienced first hand the workers' rebellion of 
1832 in Lyons. It appears that no trace remained in bim of any impressions that 
event might have left. [ J23a,5] 

"One of the arguments he makes to his guardian, Ancelle, is rather curious. It 
seems to him that 'the new Napoleonic regime, after illustrations depicting the 
battlefield, ought to seek illustrations depicting the arts and letters. "' Alphonse 
Seche, La Vie des Fleurs du mal (Paris, 1928), p. 172. [ J23a,6] 

The sense of "the abyssal" is to be defined as "meaning." Such a sense is always 
allegorical. [J24,l] 

With Blanqui, the cosmos has become an abyss. Baudelaire's abyss is starless; it 
should not be defined as cosmic space. But even less is it the exotic space of 
theology. It is a secularized space: the abyss of knowledge and of meanings. 
What constitutes its historical index? In Blanqui, the abyss has the historical 
index of mechanistic natural science. In Baudelaire, doesn't it have the social 
index of nouveaute? Is not the arbitrariness of allegory a twin to that of fashion? 


Explore the question whether a connection exists between the works of the 
allegorical imagination and the correspondances. In any case, these are two wholly 
distinct sources for Baudelaire's production. That the first of them has a very 
considerable share in the specific qualities of his poetry caimot be doubted. The 
nexus of meanings might be akin to that of the fibers of spun yarn. If we can 
distinguish between spinning and weaving activity in poets, then the allegorical 
imagination must be classed with the former. — On the other hand, it is not 
impossible that the correspondences play at least some role here, insofar as a 
word, in its way, calls forth an image; thus, the image could determine the 
meaning of the word, or else the word that of the image. [ J24,3] 

Disappearance of allegory in Victor Hugo. [ J24,4] 

Do flowers lack souls? Is this an implication of the title LesFleurs du mal?ln other 
words, are flowers a symbol of the whore? Or is tliis title meant to recall flowers 
to their true place? Pertinent here is the letter accompanying the two crepuscule 
<twilight> poems wliich Baudelaire sent to Fernand Desnoyers for his Fontaine- 
bleau: Paysages, legendes, souvenirs, fantairies (1855). <See below, 24a, l.> [J24.5] 

Utter detachment of Poe from great poetry. For one Fouque, he would give fifty 
Molieres. The Iliad and Sophocles leave him cold. This perspective would accord 
perfectly with the theory oll'art pour I'art. What was Baudelaire's attitude? 


With the mailing of the "Crepuscules" to Fernand Desnoyers for his Fontaine- 
bleau (Paris, 1855): "My dear Desnoyers: You ask me for some verses for your 
little anthology, verses about Nature, I believe; about forests, great oak trees, 
verdure, insects — and perhaps even the sun? But you know perfectly well that I 
can't become sentimental about vegetation and that my soul rebels against this 
strange new religion. ... I shall never believe that the souls of the gods live in 
plants .... I have always thought, even, that there was something irritating and 
impudent about Nature in its fresh and rampant state." 126 Cited in A. Seche, La 
Vie des Fleurs du mal <Amiens, 1928>, pp. 109-110. [J24a,l] 

"Les Aveugles" <Blind Men>: Crepet gives as source for this poem of Baudelaire's 
a passage from "Des Vetters Eckfenster" <My Cousin's Corner Window> — a 
passage about the way blind people hold their heads. Hoffmann considers the 
heavenward gaze to be edifying. <See T4a,2.> [ J24a,2] 

Louis Goudall criticized Baudelaire on November 4, 1855, on the basis of poems 
published in La Revue des deux mondes. "Poetry that is . . . nauseating, glacial, 
straight from the charnel house and the slaughterhouse." Cited in Francois Por- 
che, La Vie de Charles Baudelaire (series entitled Le Roman des 
grandes existences, vol. 6) (Paris <1926>), p. 202. [J24a,3] 

The reviews by <Barbey> d' Aurevilly and Asselineau were turned down by Le Pays 
and La Revue frangaise, respectively. [J24a,4] 

The famous statement by Valery on Baudelaire <seejl,l> goes back, in essence, 
to the suggestions Sainte-Beuve sent to Baudelaire for his courtroom defense. "In 
the 6eld of poetry, everything was taken. Lamartine had taken the skies. Victor 
Hugo, the earth— and more than the earth. Laprade, the forests. Musset, the 
dazzling life of passion and orgy. Others, the hearth, rural life, and so on. Theo- 
phile Gautier, Spain and its vibrant colors. What then remained? What Baude- 
laire has taken. It was as though he had no choice in the matter. . . ." Cited in 
Porche, La Vie douloureuse de Charles Baudelaire <Paris, 1926>, p. 205. [ J24a,5] 

Very plausible indication in Porche to the effect that Baudelaire did not produce 
the many decisive variants to his poems while seated at his desk. (See Porche, 
p. 109.) [J24a,6] 

"Finding the poet one evening at a public ball, Charles Monselet accosted him: 
'What are you doing here?' — 'My dear fellow,' replied Baudelaire, 'I'm watching 
the death's heads pass!'" Alphonse Seche, La Vie des Fleurs du mal (<Amiens,> 
1928), p. 32. [J25.1] 

' 4 IIis earnings have been reckoned: the total for his entire life does not exceed 
sixteen thousand francs. Catulle Mendes calculated that the author . . . would 
have received about one franc seventy centimes per day as payment for his literary 
labors." Alphonse Seche, La Vie des Fleurs du mal (< Amiens,) 1928), p. 34. 


According to Seche, Baudelaire's aversion to a sky that was "much too blue" — or 
rather, much too bright — would have come from his stay on the island of Mauri- 
tius. (See Seche, p . 42.) [ J25.3] 

Seche speaks of a pronounced similarity between Baudelaire's letters to Mile. 
Daubrun and his letters to Mme. Sabatier. (See p. 53.) [J25,4] 

According to Seche (p. 65), Champfleury would have taken part with Baudelaire 
in the founding of Le Salut public. [ J25.5] 

Prarond on the period around 1845: ' l We understood little of the use of tables for 
working, thinking, composing. . . . For my part, I saw him composing verses on 
the run while he was out in the streets; I never saw him seated before a ream of 
paper." Cited in Seche, La Vie des Fleurs du mal (1928), p. 84. [J25,6] 

The way Baudelaire presented himself during his Brussels lecture on Gautier, as 
described by Camille Lemonnier in La Vie beige: "Baudelaire made one think of a 
man of the church, with those beautiful gestures of the pulpit. His soft linen cuffs 

fluttered like the sleeves of a clerical frock. He developed his subject with an 
almost evangelical unctuousness, proclaiming his veneration for a literary master 
in the liturgical tones of a bishop announcing a mandate. To himself, no doubt, he 
was celebrating a Mass full of glorious images; he had the grave beauty of a cardi- 
nal of letters officiating at the altar of the Ideal. His smooth, pale visage was 
shaded in the halftone of the lamplight. I watched his eyes move like black suns. 
His mouth had a life of its own within the life and expressions of his face; it was 
thin and quivering with a delicate vibrancy under the drawn bow of his words. 
And from its haughty height the head commanded the attention of the intimidated 
audience." Cited in Seche, La Vie des Fleurs du mal (1928), p. 68. [J25.7] 

Baudelaire transferred his application for the playwright Scribe's seat in the 
Academie Fran$aise to that of the Catholic priest Lacordaire. [J25a,l] 

Gautier: "Baudelaire loves ample polysyllabic words, and with three or four of 
these words he sometimes fashions lines of verse that seem immense, lines that 
resonate in such a way as to lengthen the meter." Cited in A. Seche, La Vie des 
Fleurs du mal (<Amiens,> 1928), p. 195. [J25a,2] 

Gautier: "To the extent that it was possihle, he banished eloquence in poetry." 
Cited in A. Seche, La Vie des Fleurs du mal (1928), p. 197. [ J25a,3] 

E. Faguet in an article in La Revue: "Since 1857, the neurasthenia among us has 
scarcely abated; one could even say that i t has been on the rise. Hence, 'there is no 
cause for wonder,' as Ronsard once said, that Baudelaire still has his follow- 
ers. ..." Cited in Alphonse Seche, La Vie des Fleurs du mal (1928), p. 207. 


Le Figaro publishes (date?) an article by GustaveBourdin that was written at the 
instigation of Interior Minister Billaut. The latter had shortly before, as judge or 
public prosecutor, suffered a setback with the acquittal of Flaubert in the trial 
against Madame Bovary. A few days later came Thierry's article in Le Moniteur. 
"Why did Sainte-Beuve . . . leave it to Thierry to tell readers of Le Moniteur about 
Les Fleurs du mal? Sainte-Beuve doubtless refused to write about Baudelaire's 
book because he deemed it more prudent to efface the ill effect his article on 
Madame Bovary had had in the inner circles of the government." Alphonse Seche, 
La Vie des Fleurs du mal (1928), pp. 156-157. 127 [ J25a,5] 

The denunciation in Bourdin's article is treacherously disguised as praise for 
precisely those poems singled out in the indictment. After a disgusted enumera- 
tion of Baudelaire's topics, he writes: "And in the middle of it all, four poems — 'Le 
Reniement de Saint Pierre,' then 'Lesbos,' and two entitled 'Fenunes danmees' — 
four masterpieces of passion, of art, and of poetry. It is understandable that a poet 
of twenty might be led by his imagination to treat these subjects, but nothing 

excuses a man over thirty who foists such monstrosities on the public by means 
of a book." Cited in Alphonse Seche, La Vie des Fleurs du mal (1928), p. 158. 


From Edouard Thierry's review of Les Fleurs du mal in Le Moniteur (July 14, 
1857?): "The Florentine of old would surely recognize, in this French poet of 
today, the characteristic ardor, the terrifying utterance, the ruthless imagery, and 
the sonority of his brazen lines. ... I leave his book and his talent under Dante's 
stern warning." 128 Cited in Alphonse Seche, Le Vie des Fleurs du mal (1928), 
pp. 160-161. [J26.1] 

Baudelaire's great dissatisfaction with the frontispiece designed by Bracquemond 
according to specifications provided by the poet, who had conceived this idea 
while perusing Hyacinthe Langlois' Hutoire des danses macabre s. Baudelaire's 
instructions: "A skeleton turning into a tree, with legs and ribs forming the trunk, 
the arms stretched out to make a cross and bursting into leaves and buds, shelter- 
ing several rows of poisonous plants in little pots, lined up as if in a gardener's 
hothouse." <SeeJ16,3.> Bracquemond evidently runs into difficulties, and more- 
over misses the poet's intention when he masks the skeleton's pelvis with flowers 
and fails to give its arms the form of branches. From what Baudelaire has said, 
the artist simply does not know what a squelette arborescent is supposed to be, and 
he can't conceive how vices are supposed to be represented as flowers. (Cited in 
Alphonse Seche, La Vie des Fleurs du mal [<Amiens,> 1928], pp. 136-137, as 
drawn from letters.) In the end, a portrait of the poet by Bracquemond was 
substituted for this planned image. Something similar resurfaced around 1862, as 
Poulet-Malassis was planning a luxury edition of Les Fleurs du mal. He commis- 
sioned Bracquemond to do the graphic design, which apparently consisted of 
decorative borders and vignettes; emblematic devices played a major role on 
these. (See Seche, p. 138.) — The subject that Bracquemond had failed to render 
was taken up by Rops in the frontispiece to Les Epaves (1866). [J26.2] 

List of reviewers for Les Fleurs du mal, with the newspapers Baudelaire had in 
mind for them: Buloz, Lacaussade, Gustave Rouland (La Revue europeenne); 
Gozlan (Le Monde illustre); Sainte-Beuve (Le Moniteur); Deschanel (Le Journal 
des debuts); Aurevilly (Le Pays); Janin (Le ISord); Armand Fraisse (Le Salut 
public de Lyons); Guttinguer (La Gazette de France). (According to Seche, 
p. 140.) [J26.3] 

The publication rights for Baudelaire's entire oeuvre were auctioned after his 
death to Michel Levy for 1,750 francs. [J26.4] 

The "Tableaux Parisiens" appear only with the second edition of Le Fleurs du 
mal. [J26.5] 

The definitive title for the book was proposed by Hippolyte Babou in the Cafe 
Lamblin. [J26a,l] 

"L'Amour et le crane" <Eros and the Skulb. "This poem of Baudelaire's was 
inspired by two works of the engraver Henri Goltzius." Alphonse Seche, La Vie 
des Fleurs du mal (<Amiens,> 1928), p. 111. [J26a,2] 

"A line Passante." "M. Crepet mentions as possible source a passage from 'Dina, 
la belle Juive,' in Petrus Borel's Champavert . . . : 'For me, the thought that this 
lightning (lash that dazzled us will never be seen again . . . ; that two existences 
made . . . for happiness together, in this life and in eternity, are forever sun- 
dered . . . — forme, this thought is profoundly saddening.'" Cited in A. Seche, La 
Vie des Fleurs du mml, p. 108. [J26a,3] 

"Reve parisien." Like the speaker in the poem, Constantin Guys also rose at noon; 
hence, according to Baudelaire (letter of March 13, 1860, to Poulet-Malassis), the 
dedication. 129 [J26a,4] 

Baudelaire (where?) l:, ° points to the third book of the Aeneid as source for "Le 
Cygne." (See Seche, p. 104.) [J26a,5] 

To the right of the barricade; to the left of the barricade. It is very significant that, 
for large portions of the middle classes, there was only a shade of difference 
between these two positions. This changes only with Louis Napoleon. For 
Baudelaire it was possible (no easy trick!) to be friends with Pierre Dupont and to 
participate in the June Insurrection on the side of the proletariat, while avoiding 
any sort of run-in when he encountered his friends from the Ecole Norinande, 
Chennevieres and Le Vavasseur, in the company of a national guardsman. — It 
may be recalled, in this context, that the appointment of General Aupick as 
ambassador to Constantinople in 1848 goes back to Lamartine, who at that time 
was minister of foreign affairs. [ J26a,6] 

Work on Les Fleurs du malup through the first edition: fifteen years. [J26a,7] 

Proposal of a Brussels pharmacist to Poulet-Malassis: in exchange for a commit- 
ment to buy 200 copies, he would be allowed to advertise to readers, in the back 
pages of Les Paradis artificiels, a hashish extract prepared by his firm. Baude- 
laire's veto won out with difficulty. [ J26a,8] 

From <Barbey> d'Aurevilly's letter to Baudelaire of February 4, 1859: "Villain of 
genius! In poetry, I knew you to he a sacred viper spewing your venom in the faces 
of the g — s and the g — s. But now the viper has sprouted wings and is soaring 
through the clouds to shoot its poison into the very eyes of the Sun!" Cited in 
Ernest Seilliere, Baudelaire (Paris, 1931). p. 157. [ J27,l] 

In Honfleur, he had hung two paintings over his bed. One of them, painted by his 
father as pendant to the other, showed an amorous scene; the other, dating from 
an earlier time, a Temptation of Saint Anthony. In the center of the first picture, a 
bacchante. [J27,2] 

"Sand is inferior to Sade!" i:u [J27,3] 

"We ensure that our confessions are well rewarded" 132 — this should be compared 
with the practice of his letters. [ J27,4] 

Seilliere (p. 234) cites <Barbey> d'Aurevilly: "Ibe's hidden objective was to con- 
found the imagination of his times. . . . Hoffmann did not have this terrible 
power." Such puissance terrible was surely Baudelaire's as well. [J27,5] 

On Delacroix (according to Seilliere, p. 114): "Delacroix is the artist best 
equipped to portray modern woman in her heroic manifestations, whether these 
be understood in the divine or the infernal sense. ... It seems that such color 
thinks for itself, independently of the objects it clothes. The effect of the whole is 
almost musical." 133 [J27,6] 

Fourier is said to have presented his "minute discoveries" too "pompously." 13 ' 1 


Seilliere represents as his particular object of study what in general determines 
the standard for the literature on Baudelaire: "It is, in effect, the theoretical 
conclusions imposed on Charles Baudelaire by his life experiences that I am 
particularly concerned with in these pages." Ernest Seilliere, Baudelaire (Paris, 
1931), p. 1. ' [J27,8] 

Eccentric hehavior in 1848: '"They've just arrested de Flotte,' he said. 'Is it 
because his hands smelled of gunpowder? Smell mine!'" Seilliere, Baudelaire 
(Paris, 1931), p. 51. [J27,9] 

Seilliere (p. 59) righdy contrasts Baudelaire's postulate, according to which the 
advent of Napoleon III is to be interpreted in de Maistre's sense as "providen- 
tial," with his comment: "My rage at the coup d'etat. How many bullets I braved! 
Another Bonaparte! What a disgrace!" Both in "Mon Coeur mis a nu." m 


The bookby Seilliere is thoroughly imbued with the position of its author, who is 
president of the Academie des Sciences Morales et Politiques. A typical premise: 
"The social question is a question of morality" (p. 66). Individual sentences by 
Baudelaire are invariably accompanied by the author's marginal glosses. 


Bourdin: son-in-law of Villemessant. Le Figaro in 1863 publishes a violent attack 
by Pontmartin on Baudelaire. In 1864., he halts publication of the Petits Poemes en 
prose after two installments. Villemessant: "Your poems bore everybody." See 
Frangois Porche, La Vie douloureuse de Charles Baudelaire (series entitled Le 
Roman des grandes existences, vol. 6) (Paris <1926>), p. 261. [ J27a,3] 

On Lamartine: "A bit of a strumpet, a bit of a whore." Cited in Francois Porche, 
La Vie douloureuse de Charles Baudelaire (series entitled Le Roman des grandes 
existences, vol. 6) (Paris), p. 248. [ J27a,4] 

Relation to Victor Hugo: "He had solicited from him a preface to the study on 
Gautier, and, with the aim of forcing Victor Hugo's hand, had even dedicated some 
poems to him." Francois Porche, La Vie douloureuse de Charles Baudelaire (se- 
ries entitled Le Roman des grandes existences, vol. 6) (Paris), p. 251. [ J27a,5] 

Title of the first publication of pieces from Les Paradis artijiciels in La Revue 
contemporaine, 1858: "De l'ldeal artificiel" <0n the Artificial Ideab. [ J27a,6] 

Sainte-Beuve's article in Le Constitutional of January 20, 1862. Subsequently, 
as early as February 9 — as Baudelaire is toying with the idea of declaring his 
candidacy for Lacordaire's seat instead of for Scribe's, which was liis original 
plan — the admonition: "Leave the Academic as it is, more surprised than 
shocked." Baudelaire withdraws his application. See Porche, La Vie douloureuse 
de Charles Baudelaire (Paris), p. 247. [J27a,7] 

"Note that this innovator has not a single new idea. After Vigny, one must wait 
until Sully-Prudhomme to find new ideas in a French poet. Baudelaire never 
entertains anything but the most threadbare platitudes. He is the poet of aridity 
and banality. "Benediction": the artist here below is a martyr. "L'Albatros": the 
artist flounders in reality. "Les Phares": artists are the beacons of humanity. . . . 
Brunetiere is surely right: there is nothing more in "Une Charogne" than the 
words of Ecclesiasticus, 'With all flesh, hoth man and beast, . . . are death and 
bloodshed.'"" 7 Emile Faguet, "Baudelaire," La Revue, 87 (1910), p. 619. 


"He has almost no imagination. His inspiration is amazingly meager." E. Faguet, 
"Baudelaire," La Revue, 87 (1910), p. 616. [J28,2] 

Faguet draws a comparison between Senancour and Baudelaire — what's more, in 
favor of the former. [J28,3] 

J. -J. Weiss (Revue contemporaine, January 1858): "This line of verse . . . resem- 
bles one of those spinning tops that would hum in the gutter." Cited in Camille 
Vergniol, "Cinquante ans apres Baudelaire," Revue de Paris, 24th year (1917), 
p. 687. [J28,4] 

Pontmartin in his critique of the portrait of Baudelaire by Nargeot: "This engrav- 
ing shows us a face that is haggard, sinister, ravaged, and malign; it is the face of a 
hero of the Court of Assizes, or of a pensioner from Bicetre." Compare B2a,6 
(Vischer: the "freshly beheaded" look). [J28,5] 

Adverse criticism from Brunetiere in 1887 and 1889. In 1892 and 1893 come the 
corrections. The sequence: Questions de critique (June 1887); Essai sur la littera- 
ture content por aine (1889); ISouveaux Essais sur la litterature contemporaine 
(1892); Evolution de la poesie lyrique en France (1893). 1311 [ J28,6] 

Physiognomy of Baudelaire in his last years: "He has an aridity in all his features, 
which contrasts sharply with the intensity of his look. Above all, he has that set to 
his lips which indicates a mouth long accustomed to chewing only ashes." Francois 
Porche, La Vie douloureuse de Charles Baudelaire (series entitled Le Roman des 
grandes existences, vol. 6) (Paris <1926>), p. 291. [J28,7] 

1861. Suicidal impulses. Arsene Houssaye of La Revue contemporain learns that 
some of the Petits Poemes en prose appearing in his journal have already appeared 
in the La Revue fantaisiste. Publication is suspended. — Lm, Revue des deux 
mondes rejects the essay on Guys. — Le Figaro brings it out with an "editorial 
note" by Bourdin. [ J28.8] 

First lectures in Belgium: Delacroix, Gautier. [ J28a,l] 

The Ministry of the Interior refuses to issue its stamp to Les Paradis artificiels. 
(See Porche, p. 226.) What does that signify? [J28a,2] 

Porche (p. 233) points out that Baudelaire throughout his life retained the mind- 
set of a young man of good family. — Very instructive in this regard: "In every 
change there is something at once vile and agreeable, some element of disloyalty 
and restlessness. This sufficiently explains the French Revolution.'"^ The senti- 
ment recalls Proust — who was also a Jib de famille. The historical projected into 
the intimate. [J28a,3] 

Meeting between Baudelaire and Proudhon in 1848 at the offices of Proudhon's 
daily newspaper, Le Representant du peuple. A chance encounter, it ends with 
their having dinner together on the Rue Neuve-Vivienne. [J28a,4] 

The hypothesis that Baudelaire, in 1848, helped to found the conservative news- 
paper Le Representant de I'Indre (later edited by Ponroy) comes from Renejohan- 
net. The newspaper supported the candidacy of Cavaignac. Baudelaire's 
collaboration at that moment, assuming it took place at all, may have involved a 
mystification. Without his knowledge, his trip to Chateauroux was subsidized, 
through Ancelle, by Aupick. [J28a,5] 

According to Le Dantec, the second tercet of "Sed Non Satiata" is in some degree 
linked to "Les Lesbiennes." [J28a,6] 

By 1843, according to Prarond, a great many poems from Le Fleurs du mal were 
already written. [ J28a,7] 

In 1845, "The Gold-Bug" is translated by Alphonse Borghers as "Le Scarabee 
d'or" in La Revue britannique. The next year, La Quotidienne publishes an adapta- 
tion, signed by initials only, of "The Murders in the Rue Morgue," wherein Poe's 
name goes unmentioned. Decisive for Baudelaire, according to Asselineau, was 
the translation of "The Black Cat" by Isabelle Meunier, in La Democratie pacifique 
(1847). Characteristically enough, the first of Baudelaire's translations fromPoe, 
to judge by the date of publication <July 15, 1848>, was of "Mesmeric Revela- 
tion." [J28a,8] 

1855: Baudelaire writes a letter to George Sand, interceding on behalf of Marie 
Daubrun. [J28a,9] 

"Always very polite, very haughty, and very unctuous at the same time, there was 
about him something reminiscent of the monk, of the soldier, and of the cosmopoli- 
tan." Judith Cladel, Bonshommes (Paris, 1879), cited in E. and J. Crepet, Charles 
Baudelaire (Paris, 1906), p. 237. [J29,l] 

In his "Notes et documents pourmon avocat," Baudelaire refers to the letters on 
art and morality which Balzac addressed to Hippolyte Castille in the newspaper 
La Semaine. 110 [ J29,2] 

Lyons is noted for its thick fog. [ J29,3] 

In 1845, apparent suicide attempt: knife wound in the chest. [J29,4] 

"It is partly a life of leisure that has enahled me to grow. — To my great detri- 
ment — for leisure without fortune breeds dehts. . . . But also to my great profit, as 
regards sensibility and meditation. . . . Other men of letters are, for the most part, 
hase ignorant drudges." 141 Cited in Porche, <La Vie douloureuse de Charles 
Baudelaire (Paris, 1926),> p. 116. [ J29,5] 

Louis Goudall's article in Le Figaro of November 4, 1855, which took aim at the 
publication of poems in La Revue des deux mondes, caused Michel Levy to give up 
the rights to Les Fleurs du mal to Poulet-Malassis. [ J29,6] 

1848: Le Salut public, with Champfleury and Toubin. First issue, February 27, 
written and edited in less than two hours. In that issue, presumably hy the hand 
of Baudelaire: "A few misguided hrethren have smashed some mechanical 

presses. . . . AH machinery is sacred, like a work of art" (cited in Porche, 
p. 129).— Compare "the bloody apparatus of Destruction." 1 12 [ J29.7] 

1849: Le Representant de I'Indre. Baudelaire's participation not established with 
certainty. If the article "Actuellement" <At the Present Time> is written by him, 
then a certain mystification at the expense of the conservative principals at the 
newspaper is not out of the question. [ J29.8] 

1851: with Dupont and La Chambaudie, La Republique du peuple, democratic 
almanac; "Editor, Baudelaire." Only "L'Ame du vin" <The Soul of the Wine> is 
puhlished there with his signature, [ J29,9] 

1852: with Champfleury and Monselet, La Semaine thedtrale. [ J29,10] 

Addresses: February 1854 


Decemher 1858 
Summer 1859 

Hotel de York, Rue Sainte-Anne 
Hotel du Maroc, Rue de Seine 
Hotel Voltaire, Quai Voltaire 
22 Rue Beautreillis 

Hotel de Dieppe, Rue d'Amsterdam 


At the age of twenty-seven, Baudelaire was gray at the temples. [J29,12] 

From Charles Asselineau, Baudelaire: Recueil d'Anecdotes (in Crepet, Charles 
Baudelaire [Paris, 1908], <pp. 279ff.> published in extenso): the story of 
Asselineau's handkerchief Baudelaire's obstinacy. Provocative effects of his 
"diplomacy." His mania for shocking people. [ J29a,l] 

From Gautier's obituary for Baudelaire, Le Moniteur, September 9, 1867: "Born 
in India, and possessing a thorough knowledge of the English language, he made 
his debut with his translations of Edgar Poe." Theopbile Gautier, Portraits con- 
temporains (Paris, 1874), p. 159. [J29a,2] 

A good half of Gautier's obituary notice is occupied with Poe. The part devoted to 
Les Fleurs du mal depends on metaphors which Gautier extracts from a story by 
Hawthorne: "We never read Les Fleurs du mal, by Baudelaire, without thinking 
involuntarily of that tale by Hawthorne <entitled "Rappaccini's Daughter"); it has 
those somber and metallic colors, those verdigris blossoms and heady perfumes. 
His muse resembles the doctor's daughter whom no poison can harm, but whose 
pallid and anemic complexion betrays the influence of the milieu she inhabits." 
Theophile Gautier, Portraits contemporains (Paris, 1874), p. 163. <See J3a,2.> 


Gautier's characterization of Baudelaire, in his Hutoire du Romantume, is not 
much more than a succession of questionable metaphors. "This poet's talent for 

concentration has caused him to reduce each piece to a single drop of essence 
enclosed in a crystal flagon cut with many facets," and so on (p. 350). Banality 
pervades the entire analysis. "Although he loves Paris as Balzac loved it; al- 
though, in his search for rhymes, he wanders through its most sinister and 
mysterious lanes at the hour when the reflections of the lights change the pools of 
rainwater into pools of blood, and when the moon moves along the broken 
outline of the dark roofs like an old yellow ivory skull; although he stops at times 
by the smoke-dimmed windows of taverns, listening to the croaking song of the 
drunkard and the strident laugh of the prostitute, ... yet very often a suddenly 
recurring thought takes him back to India." Theophile Gautier, Histoire du Ro- 
mantume (Paris, 1874), p. 379 ("Le Progres de la poesie franchise depuis 1830").' u 
Compare Rollinat! [ J29a,4] 

Interior of the Hotel Pimodarr. no sideboard, no dining room table, frosted glass 
panes. At that point, Baudelaire had a servant. [ J29a,5] 

1851: new poems in he Messager de V ' Assemblee. The Saint-Simonian Revue poli- 
tique turns down his manuscripts. Porche remarks that it looks very much as 
though Baudelaire was not really able to choose where to publish. [ J30,l] 

The fortune Baudelaire inherited in 184.2 totaled 75,000 francs (in 1926, equiva- 
lent to 450,000 francs). To his colleagues — BanviJle — he passed for "very rich." 
He soon afterward discreetly left home. [J30,2] 

As Porche nicely puts it (<La Vie douloureuse de Charles Baudelaire [Paris, 
1926],> p. 98), Ancelle was the embodiment of the "legal world." [ J30,3] 

Journey to Bordeaux in 1841 by stagecoach, one of the last. — A very severe 
storm Baudelaire went through on board the ship commanded by Captain Saliz, 
the Paquebot des Men du Sud, appears to have left little trace in his work. [ J30,4] 

Baudelaire's mother was twenty-six and his father sixty when they married in 
1819. [J30.5] 

In the Hotel Pimodan, Baudelaire wrote with a red goose quill. [ J30,6] 

"Mesmeric Revelation," certainly not one of Poe's more distinguished works, is 
the only story to be translated by Baudelaire during the American author's life- 
time. 1852: Poe biography in La Revue de Paris. 1854: beginning of the translation 
work. [J30,7] 

It should be remembered that Jeanne Duval was Baudelaire's first love. [ J 3 0,8] 

Meetings with his mother in the Louvre during the years of dissension with Aupick. 


The banquets organized by Philoxene Boyer. Baudelaire gives readings of "Une 
Charogne," "Le Vin de l'assassin," "Delphine et Hippolyte" (Porche, <La Vie dou- 
loureuse de Charles Baudelaire [Paris, 1926], > p. 158). [ J30,10] 

Porche (p. 98) draws attention to the fact that, with Saliz, Ancelle, and Aupick, 
Baudelaire had relations of a typical sort. [J30.ll] 

Sexual preoccupations, as revealed by the titles of projected novels: "Les En- 
seignements d'un monstre" <Education of a Monsteo, "Une Infame adoree" 
<Beloved Slattern>, "La Maitresse de 1'idiot" <The Idiot's Mistress>, "Les 
Tribades" <The Dykes>, "L'Entreteneur" <The Keeper>. [ J30,12] 

Consider that Baudelaire not infrequently, it appears, loved to humble himself in 
long conversations with Ancelle. In this, too, he is a Jils de famille. More along 
these lines in his farewell letter: "I shall probably have to live a very hard life, but 
I shall be better off that way."" 5 [ J30.13] 

Cladel mentions a "noble and transcendent dissertation" by Baudelaire on the 
physiognomy of language, having to do with the colors of words, their peculiarities 
as sources of light, and finally their moral characteristics. [J30a,l] 

Indicative of a perhaps not uncommon tone in the exchanges between the two 
writers is Champfleury's letter of March 6, 1863. Baudelaire, in a letter now lost, 
had declined Champfleury's proposal to meet a female admirer of the Le Fleurs 
du mal and the writings of Poe, making a point of his dignity. Champfleury 
responds: "As for my compromised dignity, I refuse to hear of it. Stop frequenting 
places of far worse repute. Try to imitate my life of hard work; be as independent 
as I am; never have to depend on others — and then you can talk about dignity. / 
The word, in fact, means nothing to me, and I put it down to your peculiar ways, 
which are both affected and natural" (cited in E. and J. Crepet, <Charles Baude- 
laire [Paris, 1906],> appendix, p. 341). Baudelaire (Lettres, pp. 349ff.) writes back 
on the same day. 146 [J30a,2] 

Hugo to Baudelaire, August 30, 1857. He acknowledges receipt of Les Fleurs du 
mal. "Art is like the heavens; it is the infinite field. You have just proved that. Your 
Fleurs du mal are as radiant and dazzling as the stars." Cited in Crepet, p. 113. 
Compare the great letter of October 6, 1859, containing the formula and credo of 
progress. [J30a,3] 

Paul de Molenes to Baudelaire, May 14, 1860. "You have this gift for the new, 
something that has always seemed to me precious — indeed, almost sacred." Cited 
in Crepet, p. 413. [J30a,4] 

Ange Efechmeja, Bucharest, February 11-23, 1866. In this long letter full of great 
admiration, an exact outlook on la poesie pure: "I would say something more: I 

am convinced that, if the syllables that go to form verses of this kind were to be 
translated by the geometric forms and subtle colors which belong to them by 
analogy, they would possess the agreeable texture and beautiful tints of a Persian 
carpet or Indian shawl. / My idea will strike you as ridiculous; but I have often 
felt like drawing and coloring your verse." Cited in Crepet, p. 415. [J30a,5] 

Vigny to Baudelaire, January 27, 1862: "How . . . unjust you are, it seems to me, 
toward this lovely bouquet, so variously scented with odors of spring, for having 
given it a title it does not deserve, and how much I deplore that poisonous air 
which you sometimes pipe in from the murky bourne of Hamlet's graveyard." 
Cited in Crepet, p. 441. [J30a,6] 

From the letter that Baudelaire sent to Empress Eugenie, November 6, 1857: "But 
the fine, increased by costs that are unintelligible to me, exceeds the resources of 
the proverbial poverty of poets, and . . . , convinced that the heart of the Empress 
is open to pity for all tribulations, spiritual as well as material, I have conceived 
the idea, after a period of indecision and timidity that lasted ten days, of appealing 
to the gracious goodness of your Majesty and of entreating your intercession with 
the minister of justice." 1 ' 17 H. Patry, "L'Epilogue du proces des Fleurs du mal: Une 
Lettre inedite de Baudelaire a l'lmperatrice," Revue d'histoire litteraire de la 
France, 29th year (1922), p. 71. [J31.1] 

From Schaunard, Souvenirs (Paris, 1887): '"I detest the countryside,' says 
Baudelaire in explanation of his hasty departure from Honfleur, 'particularly in 
good weather. The persistent sunshine oppresses me. . . . Ah! speak to me of those 
everchanging Parisian skies that laugh or cry according to the wind, and that 
never, in their variable heat and humidity, have any effect on the stupid crops. . . . 
I am perhaps affronting your convictions as a landscape painter, but I must tell 
you further that an open body of water is a monstrous thing to me; I want it 
incarcerated, contained within the geometric walls of a quay. My favorite walking 
place is the emhankment along the Canal de l'Ourcq'" (cited in Crepet, p. 160). 


Crepet juxtaposes Schaunard's report with the letter to Desnoyers, and then re- 
marks in closing: "What can we conclude from all this? Perhaps simply that 
Baudelaire belonged to that family of unfortunates who desire only what they do 
not have and love only the place where they are not" (Crepet, p. 161). [J31,3] 

Baudelaire's sincerite was formerly much discussed. Traces of this debate are still 
to be found in Crepet (see p. 172). [ J31 ,4] 

"The laughter of children is like the blossoming of a flower. ... It is a plant-like 
joy. And so, in general, it is more like a smile — something analogous to the wagging 
of a dog's tail, or the purring of a cat. And if there still remains some distinction 
hetween the laughter of children and such expressions of animal contentment, . . . 
this is hecause their laughter is not entirely free of ambition, as is only proper to 

little scraps of men — that is, to budding Satans." "De l'Essence du rire," Oeuvres, 
ed. Le Dantec, vol. 2, p. 174. 14l! [J31.5] 

Christ knew anger, and also tears; he did not laugh. Virginie would not laugh at 
the sight of a caricature. The sage does not laugh, nor does innocence. "The 
comic element is a damnable thing, and one of diabolical origin." "De l'Essence 
du rire," Oeuvres, ed. Le Dantec, vol. 2, p. 168. m [J31a,l] 

Baudelaire distinguishes the "significative comic" from the "absolute comic." The 
latter alone is a proper object of reflection: the grotesque. 130 [ J31a,2] 

Allegorical interpretation of modern clothing for men, in the "Salon de 1846": "As 
for the garb, the outer husk, of the modern hero, ... is it not the necessary garb of 
our suffering age, which wears the symbol of perpetual mourning even on its thin 
black shoulders? Notice how the black suit and the frock coat possess not only 
their political beauty, which is an expression of universal equality, but also their 
poetic beauty, which is an expression of the public soul — an endless procession of 
hired mourners, political mourners, amorous mourners, bourgeois mourners. We 
are all of us celebrating some funeral." Oeuvres, ed. Le Dantec, vol. 2, p. 134. 151 


The incomparable force of Poe's description of the crowd. One thinks of early- 
lithographs by Senef elder, like "Der Spielclub" <The Players' Club>, "Die Menge 
nach Einbruch der Dunkelheit" <The Crowd after Nightfallx "The rays of the 
gas lamps, feeble at first in their struggle with the dying day, had now at length 
gained ascendancy, and threw over everything a fitful and garish luster. All was 
dark yet splendid — as that ebony to which has been likened the style of Tertul- 
lian." 152 Edgar Poe, Nouvelles Hutoires extraordinaires, trans. Charles Baudelaire 
(Paris <1886>), p. 94. D Flaneur 0 [J31a,4] 

"Imagination is not fantasy. . . . Imagination is an almost divine faculty which 
perceives . . . the intimate and secret relations of things, the correspondences and 
the analogies." <Baudelaire,> "Notes nouvelles sur Edgar Poe," Nouvelles His- 
toires extraordinaires, pp. 13-14. 153 [J31a,5] 

Purely emblematic book illustration — ornamented with devices — which Brac- 
quemond had designed for the planned de luxe edition of Les Fleurs du mal 
around 1862. The only copy of the plate was sold by Champfleury, and later 
acquired by Avery (New York). [ J31a,6] 

Concerning the conception of the crowd in Victor Hugo, two very characteristic 
passages from "La Pente de la reverie" <The Propensity for Reverio: 

Crowd without name! Chaos! — Voices, eyes, footsteps. 
Those never seen, those never known. 
All the living! — cities buzzing in the ear 
More than any beehive or American woods. 

The following passage shows the crowd depicted by Hugo as though with the 
burin of an engraver: 

The night with its crowd, in this hideous dream, 
Came on — growing denser and darker together — 
And, in these regions which no gaze can fathom, 
The increase of men meant the deepening of shadow. 
All became vague and uncertain; only a breath 
That from moment to moment would pass, 
As though to grant me a view of the great anthill, 
Opened in the far-reaching shadow some valleys of light, 
As the wind that blows over the tossing waves 
Whitens the foam, or furrows the wheat in the fields. 

Victor Hugo, Oeuvres completes, Poesie, vol. 2 (Les Orientales, Feuilles d'automne) 
(Paris, 1880), pp. 363, 365-366. [J32.1] 

Jules Troubat — Sainte-Beuve's secretary — to Poulet-Malassis, April 10, 1866: 
"See, then, how poets always end! Though the social machine revolves, and regu- 
lates itself for the bourgeoisie, for professional men, for workers, ... no benevo- 
lent statute is being established to guarantee those unruly natures impatient of all 
restraint the possibility, at least, of dying in a bed of their own. — 'But the 
brandy?' someone will ask. What of it? You too drink, Mister Bourgeois, Mister 
Grocer; you have as many vices as — and even more than — the poet. . . . Balzac 
burns himself out with coffee; Musset besots himself with absinthe and still pro- 
duces his most beautiful stanzas; Murger dies alone in a nursing home, like Baude- 
laire at this very moment. And not one of these writers is a socialist!" (Cited in 
Crepet, <Baudelaire [Paris, 1906],) pp. 196-197.) The literary market. [J32,2] 

In a draft of the letter to Jules Janin (1865), Baudelaire plays Juvenal, Lucan, and 
Petronius off against Horace. [ J32,3] 

Letter to Jules Janin: "melancholy, always inseparable from the feeling for 
beauty." Oeuvres, ed. Le Dantec, vol. 2, p. 610. [J32,4] 

"Every epic intention ... is the result of an imperfect sense of art." <Baudelaire,> 
"Notes nouvelles sur Edgar Poe" {Nouvelles Hutoires extraordinaires [Paris, 1886], 
p. 18). 131 This is, in embryo, the whole theory of "pure poetry." (Immobilization!) 


According to Crepet (<Baudelaire [Paris, 1906], > p. 155), most of the drawings left 
by Baudelaire portray "macabre scenes." [J32a,l] 

"Among all the books in the world today, the Bible being the sole exception, Les 
Fleurs du mml is the most widely published and the most often translated into other 
languages." Andre Suares, Trois Grands Vivants (Paris <1938>), p. 269 ("Baude- 
laire et Les Fleurs du maV). [ J32a,2] 

"The life of Baudelaire is a desert for anecdotes." Andre Suares, Trois Grands 
Vivants (Paris), p. 270 ("Baudelaire et Les Fleurs du mal"). [J32a,3] 

"Baudelaire does not describe." Andre Suares, Trois Grands Vivants (Paris), 
p. 294 ("Baudelaire et Les Fleurs du maV). [ J32a,4] 

In the "Salon de 1859," vehement invective against I'amour — apropos of a cri- 
tique of the Neo-Greek school: "Yet aren't we quite weary of seeing paint and 
marble squandered on behalf of this elderly scamp ...?... His hair is thickly 
curled like a coachman's wig; his fat wobbling cheeks press against his nostrils and 
his eyes; it is doubtless the elegiac sighs of the universe which distend his flesh, or 
perhaps I should say his meat, for it is stuffed, tubulous, and blown out like a bag 
of lard hanging on a butcher's hook; on his mountainous back is attached a pair of 
butterfly wings." Ch. B., Oeuvres, ed. Le Dantec (Paris), vol. 2, p. 243. ir,f ' 


"There is a worthy publication in which every contributor knows all and has a 
word to say about all, a journal in which every member of the staff . . . can instruct 
us, by turns, in politics, religion, economics, the fine arts, philosophy, and litera- 
ture. In this vast monument of fatuity, which leans toward the future like the 
Tower of Pisa, and in which nothing less than the happiness of humankind is being 
worked out . . ." Ch. B., Oeuvres, ed. Le Dantec (Paris), vol. 2, p. 258 ("Salon de 
1859"). (Le Globe?) m [J32a,6] 

In defense of Ricard: "Imitation is the intoxication of supple and brilliant minds, 
and often even a proof their superiority." Ch. B., Oeuvres, ed. Le Dantec, vol. 2, 
p. 263 ("Salon de 1859"). Pro domo'. m [J32a,7] 

"That touch of slyness which is always mingled with innocence. " Ch. B., Oeuvres, 
ed. Le Dantec, vol. 2, p. 264 ("Salon de 1859"). On Ricard. 15 " [J32a,8] 

Vigny in "Le Mont des oliviers" (Mount of Olives), against de Maistre: 

He has been on this earth for many long ages, 
Born from harsh masters and false-speaking sages, 
Who still vex the spirit of each living nation 

With spurious conceptions of my true redemption. 159 [J33,l] 

"Perhaps only Leopardi, Edgar Poe, and Dostoevsky experienced such a dearth of 
happiness, such a power of desolation. Round ahout him, this century, which in 
other respects seems so flourishing and multifarious, takes on the terrrible aspect 
of a desert." Edmond Jaloux, "Le Centenaire de Baudelaire," La Revue hebdo- 
madaire, 30th year, no. 27 (July 2, 1921), p. 77. [J33.2] 

"All by himself, Baudelaire made poetry a method of analysis, a form of introspec- 
tion. In this, he is very much the contemporary of Flauhert or of Claude Ber- 

nard." Edmond Jaloux, "Le Centenaire de Baudelaire,' 1 La Revue hebdo- 
madaire, 30th year, no. 27 (July 2, 1921), p. 69. [J33.3] 

List of Baudelaire's topics, in Jaloux: "nervous irritability of the individual de- 
voted to solitude . . . ; abhorrence of the human condition and the need to confer 
dignity upon it through religion or through art ... ; love of debauchery in order to 
forget or punish oneself . . . ; passion for travel, for the unknown, for the 
new; . . . predilection for whatever gives rise to thoughts of death (twilight, 
autumn, dismal scenes) . . . ; adoration of the artificial; complacency in spleen." 
Edmond Jaloux, "Le Centenaire de Baudelaire," La Revue hebdomadaire, 30th 
year, no. 27 (July 2, 1921), p. 69. Here we see how an exclusive regard for 
psychological considerations blocks insight into Baudelaire's genuine originality. 


Influence of Les Fleurs du mat, around 1885, on Rops, Moreau, Rodin. [J33.5] 

Influence of "Les Correspondances" on Mallarme. [ J33,6] 

Baudelaire's influence on Realism, then on Symbolism. Moreas, in the Symbolist 
manifesto of September 18, 1886 (Le Figaro): "Baudelaire must be considered the 
true precursor of the present movement in poetry." [ J33,7] 

Claudel: "Baudelaire has celebrated the only passion which the nineteenth cen- 
tury could feel with sincerity: Remorse." Cited in Le Cinquantenaire de Charles 
Baudelaire (Paris, 1917), p. 43. (Compare J53,l.> [J33,8] 

"A Dantesque nightmare." Leconte de Lisle, cited in Le Cinquantenaire de 
Charles Baudelaire (Paris, 1917), p. 17. [ J33a,l] 

Edouard Thierry compares Les Fleurs de mal to the ode written by Mirabeau 
during his imprisonment at Vincennes. Cited in Le Cinquantenaire de Charles 
Baudelaire (Paris, 1917), p. 19. [J33a,2] 

Verlaine (where?): "The profound originality of Baudelaire is ... to have repre- 
sented, in a powerful and essential way, modern man. . . . By this, I mean only 
modern man in the physical sense . . . , modern man with his senses stirred up and 
vibrating, his spirit painfully subtle, his brains saturated with tobacco, and his 
blood on fire with alcohol. . . . Charles Baudelaire . . . may be said to personify the 
ideal type, the Hero if you will, of this individuality in sensitivity. Nowhere else, 
not even in Heinrich Heine, will you find it accentuated so strongly." Cited in Le 
Cinquantenaire de Charles Baudelaire (Paris, 1917), p. 18. [ J33a,3] 

Lesbian motifs in Balzac (La Fille aux yeux d'or); Gautier (Mademoiselle de 
Maupin); Delatouche (Fragoletta). [J33a,4] 

Poems for Marie Daubrun: "Chant d'automne," "Sonnet d'automne." [J33a,5] 

Meryon and Baudelaire were born in the same year; Meryon died a year after 
Baudelaire. [J33a,6] 

In the years 1842-1845, according to Prarond, Baudelaire was fascinated with a 
portrait of a woman by Greco in the Louvre. Cited in Crepet, <Charles Baudelaire 
[Paris, 1906], > p. 70. [J33a,7] 

Project dated May 1846: "Les Amours et la mort de Lucain" <The Loves and the 
Death of Lucanx [J33a,8] 

"He was twenty-two years old, and he found himself immediately provided with 
employment at the town hall of the seventh arrondissement — -'in the Registry of 
Deaths,' he kept repeating with an air of satisfaction." Maurice Rollinat, Fin 
d'oeuvre; cited in Gustave Geffroy, Mauiice Rollinat, 1846-1903 (Paris, 1919), 
p. 5. [J33a,9] 

Barbey d' Aurevilly has placed Rollinat between Poe and Baudelaire; and he calls 
Rollinat "a poet of the tribe of Dante." Cited in Geffroy, Maurice Rollinat, p. 8. 


Composition of Baudelairean poems by Rollinat. [ J33a,ll] 

"La Voix" <The Voice>: "in the pit's deepest dark, I distinctly see strange 
worlds." 1 " 0 [J33a,12] 

According to Charles Toubin, Baudelaire in 1847 had two domiciles, on the Rue de 
Seine and the Rue de Babylone. On days when the rent was due, he often spent the 
night with friends in a third. See Crepet, <Charles Baudelaire, (Paris, 1906), > 
p. 48. [J34.1] 

Crepet (p. 47) counts fourteen addresses for Baudelaire between 1842 and 1858, 
not including Honfleur and some temporary lodgings. He lived in the Quartier du 
Temple, the He Saint-Louis, the Quartier Saint-Germain, the Quartier Mont- 
martre, the Quartier de la Republique. [ J34,2] 

"You are passing through a great city that has grown old in civilization — one of 
those cities which harbor the most important archives of universal life — and your 
eyes are drawn upward, sursum, ad sidera; for in the public squares, at the corners 
of the crossways, stand motionless figures, larger than those who pass at their 
feet, repeating to you the solemn legends of Glory, War, Science, and Martyr- 
dom, in a mute language. Some are pointing to the sky, whither they ceaselessly 
aspired; others indicate the earth from which they sprang. They brandish, or 
they contemplate, what was the passion of their life and what has become its 
emblem: a tool, a sword, a book, a torch, vitai lampadafBe you the most heedless 
of men, the most unhappy or the vilest, a beggar or a banker, the stone phantom 
takes possession of you for a few minutes and commands you, in the name of the 

past, to think of things which are not of the earth. / Such is the divine role of 
sculpture." Ch. B., Oeuvres, ed. Le Dantec, vol, 2, pp. 274-275 ("Salon de 
1859"). 1(il Baudelaire speaks here of sculpture as though it were present only in 
the big city. It is a sculpture that stands in the way of the passerby. This depiction 
contains something in the highest degree prophetic, though sculpture plays only 
the smallest part in that which would fulfill the prophecy. Sculpture is found <?> 
only in the city. [J34.3] 

Baudelaire speaks of his partiality for "the landscape of romance," more and 
more avoided by painters. From his description, it becomes evident that he is 
thinking of structures essentially Baroque: "But surely our landscape painters are 
far too herbivorous in their diet? They never willingly take their nourishment 
from ruins. ... I feel a longing for . . . crenellated abbeys, reflected in gloomy 
pools; for gigantic bridges, towering Ninevite constructions, haunts of dizzi- 
ness — for everything, in short, which would have to be invented if it did not 
already exist!" Ch. B., Oeuvres, ed. Le Dantec, vol. 2, p. 272 ("Salon de 1859")."' 2 


"Imagination . . . decomposes all creation; and with the raw materials accumu- 
lated and disposed in accordance with rules whose origins one cannot find except 
in the furthest depths of the soul, it creates a new world — it produces the sensation 
of newness." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 226 ("Salon de 1859"). lf " [J34a,l] 

On the ignorance of painters, with particular reference to Troyon: "He paints on 
and on; he stops up his soul and continues to paint, until at last he hecomes like the 
artist of the moment. . . . The imitator of the imitator finds his own imitators, and 
in this way each pursues his dream of greatness, stopping up his soul more and 
more thoroughly, and above all reading nothing, not even The Perfect Cook, 
which at any rate would have been able to open up for him a career of greater 
glory, if less profit." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 219 ("Salon de 1859"). 164 


"The pleasure of being in a crowd is a mysterious expression of sensual joy in the 
multiplication of number. . . . Number is in all. . . . Ecstasy is a number. . . . Relig- 
ious intoxication of great cities." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, pp. 626-627 
("Fusees"). 165 Extract the root of the human being! [ J34a,3] 

"The arabesque is the most spiritualistic of designs." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, 
p. 629 ("Fusees"). 166 [J34a,4] 

"For my part, I say: the sole and supreme pleasure of love lies in the absolute 
knowledge of doing evil. And man and woman know, from birth, that in evil is to be 
found all voluptuousness." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 628 ("Fusees"). lf ' 7 


"Voltaire jests about our immortal soul, which has dwelt for nine months amid 
excrement and urine. . . . He might, at least, have traced, in this localization, a 
malicious gibe or satire directed by Providence against love, and, in the way 
humans procreate, a sign of original sin. After all, we can make love only with the 
organs of excretion." Ch. Baudelaire, Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 651 ("Mon Coeur mis a 
nu")." ! At this point, Lawrence's defense of Lady Chatterley should be men- 
tioned. [J34a,6] 

Beginnings, with Baudelaire, of a devious rationalization of the charms exerted 
on him by prostitution: "Love may arise from a generous sentiment — namely, the 
liking for prostitution; but it soon becomes corrupted by the liking for owner- 
ship" ("Fusees") , "The human heart's ineradicable love of prostitution — source 
of man's horror of solitude. . . . The man of genius wants to be one — that is, 
solitary. / The glorious thing ... is to remain one by practicing your prostitution 
in your own company" ("Mon Coeur mis a nu"). Vol. 2, pp. 626, 661. 1 " 9 [J34a,7] 

In 1835 Cazotte's Le Diable amour eux is published, with a preface by Gerard de 
Nerval. Baudelaire's line in "Le Possede" — "Mon cher Belzebuth, je t' adore" — is 
an explicit citation of Cazotte. "Baudelaire's verse has a demoniacal sound much 
stranger than the diabolism of the age of Louis Philippe." Claudius Grillet, Le 
Diable dans la litterature an XIX" siecle (Lyons and Paris, 1935), pp. 95-96. 


Letter to his mother on December 26, 1853: "Besides, I am so accustomed to 
physical discomforts; I know so well how to put two shirts under a torn coat and 
trousers so threadbare that the wind cuts through them; I know so well how to put 
straw or even paper soles in worn-out shoes that I hardly feel anything except 
moral suffering. Nevertheless, I must confess that I have reached the point of 
being afraid to make brusque movements or to walk very much, for fear of tearing 
my clothes even more." Ch. B., Dernieres Lettres inedites a sa mere, introduction 
and notes by Jacques Crepet (Paris, 1926), pp. 44-45. 170 [J35,2] 

The Goncourts report in their journal on June 6, 1883, the visit of a young man 
from whom they learn that the budding scholars at the high school are divided into 
two camps. The future students of the Ecole Normale have taken About and Sar- 
cey as their models; the others, Edmond de Goncourt and Baudelaire. Journal des 
Goncourts, vol. 6 (Paris, 1892), p. 264. [J35,3] 

To his mother on March 4, 1860, concerning etchings by Meryon: "The hideous 
and colossal figure in the frontispiece is one of the figures decorating the exterior of 
Notre Dame. In the background is Paris, viewed from a height. How the devil this 
man manages to work so calmly over an abyss, I do not know." Ch. B., Dernieres 
Lettres a sa mere, introduction and notes by Jacques Crepet (Paris, 1926), 
pp. 132-133. [J35.4] 

In the Dernieres Lettres (p. 145), this phrase for Jeanne: "that aged beauty who 
has now become an invalid." 171 He wants to leave her an annuity after his death. 


Decisive for the confrontation between Baudelaire and Hugo is a passage from 
Hugo's letter of November 17, 1859, to Villemain: "Sometimes I spend the whole 
night meditating on my fate, before the great deep, and ... all I can do is exclaim: 
Stars! Stars! Stars!" Cited in Claudius Grillet, Victor Hugo spirite (Lyons and 
Paris, 1929), p. 100. 172 [J3 5,6] 

The multitudes in Hugo: "The prophet seeks out solitude. . . . He goes into the 
desert to think. Of what? Of the multitudes." Hugo, William Shakespeare, <part 2, 
book> 6. [J35,7] 

Allegory in the spiritualist protocols from Jersey: "Even pure abstractions fre- 
quented Marine-Terrace: Idea, Death, the Drama, the Novel, Poetry, Criticism, 
Humbug. They . . . preferred to make their appearance during the day, while the 
dead came at night." Claudius Grillet, Victor Hugo spirite (Lyons and Paris, 
1929), p. 27. [J35a,l] 

The "multitudes" in Hugo figure as the "depths of the shadow" in Les Chmtiments 
("La Caravane," part 4), Oeuvres completes, vol. 4, Poesie (Paris, 1882), p. 397: 
"The day when our plunderers, our tyrants beyond number, / Will know that 
someone stirs in the depths of the shadow." [J3 5a,2] 

On Les Fleurs du mal: "Nowhere does he make a direct allusion to hashish or to 
opium visions. In this we must admire the superior taste of the poet, completely 
taken up as he is with the philosophic construction of his poem." Georges Roden- 
bach, L'Elite (Paris, 1899), pp. 18-19. [J3 5a,3 ] 

Rodenbach (p. 19) emphasizes, like Beguin, the experience of the correspon- 
dances in Baudelaire. [J35a,4] 

Baudelaire to <Barbey> d'Aurevilly: "Should you take Communion with hands on 
hips?" Cited in Georges Rodenbach, L'Elite (Paris, 1899), p. 6. [J35a,5] 

Three generations (according to Georges Rodenbach, L'Elite [Paris, 1899], pp. 6- 
7) revolve about the "splendid restoration of Notre Dame." The first, forming as it 
were an outer circle, is represented by Victor Hugo. The second, represented by 
<Barbey> d'Aurevilly, Baudelaire, and Hello, forms an inner circle of devotion. 
The third is made up of the group of satanists: Huysmans, Guaita, Peladan. 


"However beautiful a house may be, it is first of all — before we consider its 
beauty — so many feet high and so many feet wide. Likewise, literature, which is 

the most priceless material, is first of all the filling up of so many columns, and a 
literary architect whose name in itself is not a guarantee of profit has to sell at all 
kinds of prices." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 385 ("Conseils aux jeunes lit- 
terateurs"). 1 " [J35a,7] 

Note from "Fusees": "The portrait of Serenas by Seneca. That of Stagirus by 
Saint John Chrysostom. Acedia, the malady of monks. Taedium vitae . . ." 
Charles Baudelaire, Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 632. 17,1 [J35a,8] 

Charles-Henry Hirsch descrihes Baudelaire, in comparison to Hugo, as "more 
capable of adapting to widely varying temperaments, thanks to the keenness of his 
ideas, sensations, and words. . . . The lessons of Baudelaire endure by virtue of 
. . . the strict form which keeps them before our eyes." Citedin Le Cinquantenaire 
de Charles Baudelaire (Paris, 1917), p. 41. [J36,l] 

A remark by Nadar in his memoirs: Around 1911, the director of an agency for 
newspaper clippings told him that Baudelaire's name used to show up in the news- 
papers as often as the names of Hugo, Musset, and Napoleon. See Le Cinquan- 
tenaire de Charles Baudelaire (Paris, 1917), p. 43. [ J36,2] 

Passage from Le Salut publique attributed by Crepet to Baudelaire: "Citizens 
should not give heed ... to such as these — to Barthelemy, Jean Journet, and 
others who extol the republic in execrable verse. The emperor Nero had the laud- 
able habit of rounding up all the bad poets in an amphitheater and flogging them 
cruelly." Cited in Crepet, <Charles Baudelaire (Paris, 1906), > p. 81. [ J36.3] 

Passage from Le Salut publique attributed by Crepet to Baudelaire: "Intellects 
have grown. No more tragedies, no more Roman history. Are we not greater today 
than Bintus?" Cited in Crepet, p. 81. [J36.4] 

Crepet (p. 82) quotes the Notes de M. Champjleury: "De Flotte perhaps belongs 
with Wronski, Blanqui, Swedenborg, and others, in that somewhat bizarre pan- 
theon which lately elevated Baudelaire, following upon the reading of his texts, the 
events of the day, and the notoriety attained overnight by certain figures." 


"The work of Edgar Poe — with the exception of few beautiful poems — is the body 
of an art from which Baudelaire has blasted the soul." Andre Suares, Sur la Vie 
(Paris, 1925), vol. 2, p. 99 ("Idees sur Edgar Poe"). [J36,6] 

Baudelaire's theory of imagination, as well as his doctrine of the short poem and 
the short story, are influenced by Poe. The theory of I' art pour I 'art, in Baude- 
laire's formulation, seems to be a plagiarism. [J36.7] 

In his commemorative address, Banville draws attention to Baudelaire's classical 

"Comment on paie ses dettes quand on a du genie" <How a Genius Pays His Debts) 
appeared in 1846 and contains, under the appellative "the second friend," the 
following portrait of Gautier: "The second friend was, and still is, fat, lazy, and 
sluggish; what is more, he has no ideas and can only string words together as the 
Osage strings beads for a necklace." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 393. 17:> [J36a,l] 

Hugo: "As for me, I am conscious of the starry gulf in my soul." "Ave, dea — mori- 
turus te salutat: A Judith Gautier," Victor Hugo, Oeuvres choisies: Poesies et 
drames en vers (Paris <1912>), p. 404. [J36a,2] 

In his famous description of the lecture Baudelaire gave on Gautier in Brussels, 
Camille Lemonnier represents in a fascinating way the mounting perplexity into 
which the lecturer's positive glorification of Gautier plunged the audience. They 
had got the impression, as the talk went on, that Baudelaire was going to turn 
with some inimitable sarcasm from all he had said, as from a kind of decoy, in 
order to develop a different conception of poetry. And this expectation paralyzed 
the listeners. [J36a,3] 

Baudelaire — Camille Pelletan's favorite poet. So says Robert de Bonnieres, 
Memoir es d'aujourd'hui, vol. 3 (Paris, 1888), p. 239. [J36a,4] 

Rohert de Bonnieres, Memoires d'uujourd'hui, vol. 3 (Paris, 1888), publishes, on 
pp. 287-288, an exasperated letter sent to Taine by the director of La Revue 
liberule on January 19, 1864 , in which he complains of the intransigence displayed 
by Baudelaire in the course of negotiations over cuts in the piece "Les Vocations" 
(S pleen de Paris). [J36a,5] 

A passage from Rodenbach that exemplifies something typical in the description 
of the city — namely, the forced metaphor: "hi these cities saddened by a choir 
of weathercocks, / Birds of iron dreaming [!] of flight to the skies." Cited in 
G. Tourquet-Milnes, The Influence of Baudelaire in France and England (London, 

In the "Salon de 1846" one sees how precise Baudelaire's concept of a politics of 
art already was at that time: section 12 ("De l'Eclectisme et du doute") and 
section 14 ("De Quelques Douteurs") show that Baudelaire was conscious early 
on of the need to bring artistic production into line with certain fixed points. In 
section 17 ("Des Ecoles et des ouvriers"), Baudelaire speaks of atomization as a 
symptom of weakness. He lauds the schools of old: " Then you had schools of 
painting; now you have emancipated journeymen . . . — a school, . . . that is, the 
impossibility of doubt." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 131. 176 Compare le poncif! 



1913), p. 191. — Parisian modernity! 



On a sheet with the sketch of a female figure and two portraits of a male head, an 
inscription 177 dating back to the nineteenth century: "Portrait of Blanqui 
(Auguste), a good likeness drawn from memory by Baudelaire in 1850, perhaps 
1849?" Reproduction in Feli Gautier, Charles Baudelaire (Brussels, 1904), p. lii. 


"He would churn his brains in order to produce astonishment." This comment by 
Leconte de Lisle occurs in the untitled article by Jules Claretie that appears in Le 
Tombeau and that reprints substantial portions of Claretie's obituary notice. Le 
Tombeau de Charles Baudelaire (Paris, 1896), p. 91. Effect of the endings ofpoems! 


"0 Poet, you who turned the work of Dante upside down, / Exalting Satan to the 
heights and descending to God." Closing lines of Verhaeren's "A Charles Baude- 
laire," in Le Tombeau de Charles Baudelaire (Paris, 1896), p. 84. [J37.3] 

In Le Tombeau de Charles Baudelaire (Paris, 1896), there is a text by Alexandre 
Ourousof, "L' Architecture secrete des Fleurs du mai." It represents an oft- 
repeated attempt to establish distinct cycles in the book, and consists essentially in 
the selection of the poems inspired by Jeanne Duval. It makes reference to the 
article published by <Barbey> d'Aurevilly in Le Pays on July 24, 1857, in which it 
was maintained for the first time that there is a "secret architecture" in the book. 


"The echoes of the unconscious are so strong in him — literary creation being, with 
him, so close to physical effort — the currents of passion are so strong, so drawn 
out, so slow and painful, that all his psychic being resides there with his physical 
being." Gustave Kahn, preface to Charles Baudelaire, "Mon Coeur mis a nu" et 
"Fusees" (Paris, 1909), p. 5. [J37.5] 

"If Poe had been a real influence on him, we would find some trace of this in 
Baudelaire's way of imagining . . . scenes of action. In fact, the greater his immer- 
sion in the work of the American writer, the more he avoids fantasies of action .... 
His projected works, his titles for novels ... all had to do with various . . . psychic 
crises. Not one suggests an adventure of any kind." Gustave Kahn, preface to 
Charles Baudelaire, "Mon Coeur mis a nu" et "Fusees" (Paris, 1909), pp. 12-13. 


Kahn discerns in Baudelaire a "refusal to take the opportunity offered by the 
nature of the lyric pretext." Gustave Kahn, preface to Ch. B., "Mon Coeur mis a 
nu" et "Fusees" (Paris, 1909), p. 15. [J37.7] 

Of the Fleurs du mal illustrated by Rodin for Paul Gallimard, Mauclair writes: 
"You feel that Rodin has handled the book, taken it up and put it down a hundred 
times, that he has read it while out on walks, and at the end of a long evening has 

suddenly reopened it under the lamplight and, haunted by a verse, picked up his 
pen. One can tell where he paused, what page he creased [!], how unsparing he 
must have been of the volume; for he had not been given some de luxe copy needing 
to be protected from damage. It was very much, as he himself liked to describe it, 
'his' pocket Baudelaire." Charles Baudelaire, Vingt-Sept Poemes des Fleurs du 
mal, illustres par Rodin (Paris, 1918), p. 7 (preface by Camille Mauclair). 


The penultimate paragraph in "Chacun sa chimere" <T6 Every Man His Chi- 
mera) is distinctly reminiscent of Blanqui: "And the procession passed by me and 
disappeared in the haze at the horizon, just where the rounded surface of the 
planet prevents the human gaze from following." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 1, p. 4 12. 178 


On the painter Jules Noel: "He is doubtless one of those who impose a daily 
amount of progress upon themselves." "Salon de 1846," Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 12 6. 179 


In the comment on Les Fleurs du mal that Sainte-Beuve sends to Baudelaire in a 
letter of <June> 20, 1857, he finds this to say about the style of the book: "a curious 
poetic gift and an almost precious lack of constraint in expression." Immediately 
following: "with your pearling of the detail, with your Petrarchism of the horri- 
ble." Cited in Etienne Charavay, A. de Vigny et Charles Baudelaire, candidats a 
VAcademief ranqaise (Paris, 187S), p. 134. [J37a,4] 

"It seems to me that in many things you do not take yourself seriously enough." 
Vigny to Baudelaire on January 27, 1862, apropos of Baudelaire's candidacy for 
the Academie. Cited in Etienne Charavay, A. de Vigny et Charles Baudelaire, 
candidats a I'Academiefrancaise (Paris, 1879), pp. 100-101. [ J37a,5] 

Jules Mouquet, in <the introduction to> his edition of Ch<arles> B<audelaire>, Vers 
retrouves: Manoel (Paris, 1929), looks into the relation between Baudelaire and the 
poems published by <G.> Le Vavasseur, E. Prarond, and A. Argonne in Vers 
(Paris, 1843). There turn out to be a number of filiations. Apart from actual 
contributions by Baudelaire that appear in the second section under the name of 
Prarond, there are important correspondences, in particular that of "Le Reve 
d'un curieux" 180 to "Le Reve," by Argonne (pseudonym of Auguste Dozon). 


Among the twenty-three poems of Les Fleurs du mal known to have been composed 
by the summer of 1843: "Allegorie," "Je n'ai pas oublie," "La Servante au grand 
coeur," "Le Crepuscule du matin." [J38,l] 

"Baudelaire feels a certain reserve about showing his work to the public; he pub- 
lishes bis poems under successive pseudonyms: Prarond, Privat d'Anglemont, 

Pierre de Fayis. 'La Fanfarlo' appears . . . on January 1, 1847, signed by Charles 
Dufays." Ch. B., Vers retrouves, eel. Jules Mouquet (Paris, 1929), p. 47. [J38.2] 

The following sonnet from the body of work by Prarond is attributed by Mouquet 
to Baudelaire: 

Born in the mud to a nameless jade, 

The child grew up speaking argot; 

By the age often, he had graduated from the sewers; 

Grown, he would sell his sister — is a jack-of -all-trades. 

His hack has the curve of an old flying buttress; 
He can sniff out the way to every cheap bordello; 
His look is a mixture of arrogance and cunning; 
He's the one to serve as watchdog for rioters. 

Wax-coated string keeps his thin soles in place; 

On his uncovered pallet a dirty wench laughs 

To think of her husband deceived hy unchaste Paris. 

Plebeian orator of the stockroom, 

He talks politics with the corner grocer. 

Here is what's called an eitfant de Paris. 

Charles Baudelaire, Vers retrouves, ed. Jules Mouquet (Paris, 1929), pp. 103- 
104. [J38.3] 

Freund contends "that the musicality of the poem does not present itself as a 
specific . . . technical quality but is rather the authentic ethos of the poet. . . . 
Musicality is the form taken by I' art pour I'art in poetry." Cajetan Freund, Der 
Vers Baudelaires (Munich, 1927), p. 46. [J38.4] 

On the publication of poems under the title Les Limbes <Limbo> in Le Messager de 
V Assemblee, April 9, 1851: "A small booklet entitled La Presse de 1848 contains 
the following: 'Today we see announced in L'Echo des marchands de vin a collec- 
tion of poems called Les Limbes. These are ivithout doubt socialist poems and, 
consequently, bad poems. Yet another fellow has become a disciple of Proudhon 
through either too much or too little ignorance."' A. de la Fineliere and Georges 
Descaux, Charles Baudelaire (series entitled Essais de bibliographie contempo- 
raine, vol. 1) (Paris, 1868), p. 12. [J38,5] 

Modernity — anticlassical and classical. Anticlassical: as antithesis to the classical 
period. Classical: as heroic fulfillment of the epoch that puts its stamp on its 
expression. [J38a,l] 

There is evidently a connection between Baudelaire's unfavorable reception in 
Belgium, his reputation as a police spy there, and the letter to Le Figaro concern- 
ing the banquet for Victor Hugo. 181 [J38a,2] 

Note the rigor and elegance of the title Curiosites esthetiques. 


The teachings of Fourier: "Although, in nature, there are certain plants which are 
more or less holy, certain . . . animals more or less sacred; and although ... we 
may rightly conclude that certain nations . . . have been prepared ... by Provi- 
dence for a determined goal . . . — nevertheless all I wish to do here is assert their 
equal utility in the eyes of Him who is undefinable." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 143 
("Exposition Universelle, 1855"). W:! [J38a,4] 

"One of those narroiv-minded modern professors of aesthetics (as they are called 
by Heinrich Heine), . . . whose stiffened fingers, paralyzed by the pen, can no 
longer run with agility over the immense keyboard of correspondences!'''' Ch. B., 
Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 145 ("Exposition Universelle, 1855"). 1114 [J38a,5] 

"In the manifold productions of art, there is something always new which will 
forever escape the rules and analyses of the school!" Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, 
p. 146 ("Exposition Universelle, 1855")." 15 Analogy to fashion. [ J38a,6] 

To the notion of progress in the history of art, Baudelaire opposes a monadologi- 
cal conception. "Transferred into the sphere of the imagination . . . , the idea of 
progress looms up with gigantic absurdity. ... In the poetic and artistic order, 
inventors rarely have predecessors. Every flowering is spontaneous, individual. 
Was Signorelli really the begetter of Michelangelo? Did Perugino contain 
Raphael? The artist depends on himself alone. He can promise nothing to future 
centuries except his own works." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 149 ("Exposition 
Universelle, 1855"). 186 [J38a,7] 

Toward a critique of the concept of progress in general: "For this is how disciples 
of the philosophers of steam and sulfur matches understand it: progress appears 
to them only in the form of an indefinite series. Where is that guarantee?" Ch. B., 
Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 149 ("Exposition Universelle, 1855"). 11,7 [J38a,8] 

"The story is told of Balzac . . . that one day he found himself in front of a . . . 
melancholy winter scene, heavy with hoarfrost and thinly sprinkled with cottages 
and wretched-looking peasants; and that, after gazing at a little house from which 
a thin wisp of smoke was rising, he cried, 'How beautiful it is! But what are they 
doing in that cottage? What are their thoughts? What are their sorrows? Has it 
been a good harvest? No doubt they have bills to pay?' Laugh if you will at M. de 
Balzac. I do not know the name of the painter whose honor it was to set the great 
novelist's soul a-quiver with anxiety and conjecture; but I think that in this way 
... he has given us an excellent lesson in criticism. You will often find me apprais- 
ing a picture exclusively for the sum of ideas or of dreams that it suggests to my 
mind." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 147 ("Exposition Universelle, 1855"). 11,11 


Conclusion of the "Salon tie 1845": "The painter, the true painter for whom we are 
looking, will be he who can snatch its epic quality from the life of today and can 
make us see and understand, with brush or with pencil, how great and poetic we 
are in our cravats and our patent-leather boots. Next year let us hope that the true 
seekers may grant us the extraordinary delight of celebrating the advent of the 
new!" Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, pp. 54-55. 189 [J39,2] 

"As for the garb, the outer husk, of the modern hero . . . , has not this much- 
maligned garb its own native beauty and charm? Is it not the necessary garb of our 
suffering age, which wears the symbol of perpetual mourning even on its thin black 
shoulders? Notice how the black suit and the frock coat possess not only their 
political beauty, which is an expression of universal equality, hut also their poetic 
beauty, which is an expression of the public soul — an endless procession of hired 
mourners, political mourners, amorous mourners, bourgeois mourners. We are 
all of us celebrating some funeral. / A uniform livery of mourning hears witness to 
equality. . . . Don't these puckered creases, playing like serpents around the mor- 
tified flesh, have their own mysterious grace? / . . . For the heroes of the Iliad 
cannot compare with you, 0 Vautrin, 0 Rastignac, O Birotteau — nor with you, 0 
Fontanares, who dared not publicly recount your sorrows wearing the funereal 
and rumpled frock coat of today; nor with you, 0 Honore de Balzac, you the most 
heroic, the most amazing, the most romantic and the most poetic of all the charac- 
ters that you have drawn from your fertile bosom!" Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, 
pp. 134, 136 ("Salon de 1846: De l'Heroisme de la vie moderne"). 190 The last 
sentence concludes the section. [ J39,3] 

"For when I hear men like Raphael and Veronese being lauded to the skies, with 
the manifest intention of diminishing the merit of those who came after them, . . . 
I ask myself if a merit which is at least the equal of theirs (I will even admit for a 
moment, and out of pure compliance, that it may be inferior) is not infinitely 
more meritorious, since it has triumphantly evolved in an atmosphere and a 
territory which are hostile to it." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 239 ("Salon de 
1859"). m Lukacs says that to make a decent table today, a man needs all the 
genius once required of Michelangelo to complete the dome of St. Peter's. 


Baudelaire's attitude toward progress was not always the same. Certain declara- 
tions in the "Salon de 1846" contrast clearly with remarks made later. In that 
essay we find, among other things: "ITiere are as many kinds of beauty as there 
are habitual ways of seeking happiness. This is clearly explained by the philoso- 
phy of progress. . . . Romanticism will not consist in a perfect execution, but in a 
conception analogous to the ethical disposition of the age" (p. 66). In the same 
text: "Delacroix is the latest expression of progress in art" (p. 85). Ch. B., 
Oeuvres, vol. 2. 192 [J39a,2] 

The importance of theory for artistic creation was not something about which 
Baudelaire was clear, initially. In the "Salon de 1845," discussing the painter 
Haussoullier, he asks: "Is M. Haussoullier perhaps one of those who know too 
much about their art? That is a truly dangerous scourge." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, 
p. 23.™ [J39a,3] 

A critique of the idea of progress, such as may become necessary in connection 
with a presentation of Baudelaire, must take great care to differentiate itself from 
the latter's own critique of progress. This applies still more unconditionally to 
Baudelaire's critique of the nineteenth century and to that entailed by his biogra- 
phy. It is a mark of the warped and crassly ignorant portrait of Baudelaire drawn 
by Peter Klassen that the poet should appear against the background of a century 
painted in the colors of Geheima. The only thing in this century really worthy of 
praise, in the author's view, is a certain clerical practice — namely, that moment 
"when, in token of the reestablished kingdom of the grace of God, the Holy of 
Holies was carried through the streets of Paris in an entourage of shining arma- 
ments. This will have been an experience decisive, because fundamental, for his 
entire existence." So begins this presentation of the poet framed in the depraved 
categories of the George circle. Peter Klassen, Baudelaire (VNcimar <1931>), p. 9. 


Gauloiserie in Baudelaire: "lb organize a grand conspiracy for the extermination 
of the Jewish race. / The Jews who are librarians and bear witness to the Redemp- 
tion." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 666 ("Mon Coeur mis a nu"). 1!M Celine has 
continued along these lines. (Cheerful assassins!) [J40,l] 

"More military metaphors: 'The poets of combat.' 'The vanguard of literatnre.' 
This weakness for military metaphors is a sign of natures that are not themselves 
militant, hut are made for discipline — that is to say, for conformity. Natures 
congenitally domestic, Belgian natures that can think only in unison." Ch. B., 
Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 654 ("Mon Coeur- mis a nu"). 1 ' 5 [J40.2] 

"If a poet demanded from the state the right to keep a few bourgeois in his stable, 
people would he very surprised; whereas if a bourgeois demanded a roast poet, 
people would find this quite natural." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 635 

("Fusees"). 1 '* [J40.3] 

"This hook is not made formy wives, my daughters, or my sisters. — I have little to 
do with snch things." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 635 ("Fusees"). 197 [J40.4] 

Baudelaire's estrangement from the age: "Tell me in what salon, in what tavern, 
in what social or intimate gathering you have heard a single witty remark uttered 
by a spoiled child [compare p. 217: "Tbe artist is today . . . but a spoiled child"] a 
profound remark, to make one ponder or dream . . . ? If such a remark has been 
tlirown out, it may indeed have been not by a politician or a philosopher, but by 

someone of an outlandish profession, like a hunter, a sailor, or a taxidermist. But 
by an artist . . . , never." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 217 ("Salon de 1859"). This is 
a sort of evocation of the "amazing travelers." 198 [ J40,5] 

Gauloiserie in Baudelaire: "In its most widely accepted sense, the word 'French- 
man' means vaudevilliste. . . . Everything that towers or plunges, above or below 
him, causes him prudently to take to his heels. The sublime always affects him like 
a riot, and he opens his Moliere only in fear and trembling — and because someone 
has persuaded him that Moliere is an amusing author." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, 
p. Ill ("Salon de 1846: DeM. Horace Vernet"). 199 [J40.6] 

Baudelaire knows, in the "Salon de 1846," "the fatal law of propensities." Ch. B., 
Oeuvres, vol. 2 , p . 114. 2 "" [ J40,7] 

Re the title Les Limbes <Limbo>, compare the passage f rom the "Salon de 1846" on 
Delacroix's painting Women of Algiers: "This little poem of an interior . . . seems 
somehow to exhale the heady scent of a house of ill repute, which quickly enough 
guides our thoughts toward the fathomless limbo of sadness." Ch. B., Oeuvres, 
vol. 2, p. 85. 2U1 [J40.8] 

Apropos a depiction of Samson by Decamps, in the "Salon de 1845": "Samson, 
that ancient cousin of Hercules and Baron von Miinchhausen." Ch. B., Oeuvres, 
vol. 2, p. 24. 2 " 2 [J40a,l] 

"Thus, France was diverted from its natural course, as Baudelaire has shown, to 
become a vehicle of the despiritualization — the 'bestialization' — of folk and 
state." Peter Klassen, Baudelaire (Weimar <1931>), p. 33. [J40a,2] 

Closing line of La Legende des siecles, part 3, section 38 ("Un Homme aux yeux 
profonds passait"): "0 scholar of abyssal things alone!" Victor Hugo, Oeuvres 
completes, Poesie, vol. 9 (Paris, 1883), p. 229. [J40a,3] 

"The boulder with the pensive profile." Victor Hugo, Oeuvres completes, Poesie, 
vol. 9 (Paris, 1883), p. 191 (Le Groupe des idylles, no. 12, "Dante"). [J40a,4] 

Crouching on the summit, the grim sphinx Nature dreams, 
Petrifying with its abyss-gaze 

The magus used to wondrous flights, 
The studious group of pale Zoroastrians, 
Sun-gazers and scanners of the stars, 

The dazzled, the astounded. 

The night revolves in riot 'round the sphinx. 
If we could once lift up its monstrous paw, 
So fascinating to the mind of yesteryear 
(Newton just as much as ancient Hermes), 

Underneath that dark and fatal claw 
We'd find this one word: Love. 

"Man deceives himself! He sees how dark all is for him." Victor Hugo, La Legende 
des siecles, part 3 ("Tenebres"), in Oeuvres completes, Poesie, vol. 9 (Paris, 
1883), pp. 164-165. Ending of the poem. [J40a,5] 

Euding of "La nuit! La nuit! La nuit!" <Night! Night! Night!>: 

O sepulchers! I hear the fearful organ of the shadow, 
Formed from all the cries of somber nature 

And the crash of rocky reefs; 
Death plays the clavier resounding through the branches, 
And the keys, now black, now white, are all 

Your tombstones and your biers. 

Victor Hugo, La Legende des siecles, part 3 ("Tenebres"), in Oeuvres completes, 
Poesie, vol. 9 (Paris, 1883), p. 161. [J40a,6] 

In La Legende des siecles <The Legend of the Ages>, part 3, poems like "Les 
Chutes : Fleuves et poetes" <The Falls: Rivers and Poets> and "Desinteressement" 
<Disinterestedness> — the one devoted to the torrents of the Rhine, the other to 
Mont Blanc — provide an especially vigorous idea of the perception of nature in 
the nineteenth century. In these poems we find the allegorical mode of vision 
uniquely interfused with the spirit of the vignette. [ J40a,7] 

From Theodore de Banville, Mes Souvenirs (Paris, 1882), ch. 7 ("Charles Baude- 
laire"). Their first meeting: "Night had come — luminous soft enchantress. We had 
left the Luxembourg and were walking along the outer boulevards, through streets 
whose movement and mysterious tumult the poet of Les Fleurs du mal had always 
so attentively cherished. Privat d'Anglemont walked a little apart from us, in 
silence" (p. 77). [J41.1] 

From Theodore de Banville, Mes Souvenirs (Paris, 1882): "I no longer recall 
which African country it was in which he was put up by a family to whom his 
parents had sent him. At any rate, he quickly became bored with the conventional 
manners of his hosts, and took off hy himself for a mountain to live with a tall 
young woman of color who understood no French, and who cooked him strangely 
spiced ragouts in a burnished copper cauldron, around which some naked little 
black children were dancing and howling. Oh, hut those ragouts! How well he 
conjured them up, and how one would have loved to try them!" (p. 79). [J41,2] 

"In his lodgings at the Hotel Pimodan, when I went there for the first time to visit 
him, there were no dictionaries, no separate study — not even a table with ivriting 
materials; nor was there a sidehoard or a separate dining room, or anything else 
resemhling the decor of a bourgeois apartment." Theodore de Banville, Mes Son- 
vetiirs (Paris, 1882), pp. 81-82. [J41,3] 

On Joseph tie Maistre: "To the pretensions and the insolence of metaphysics, he 
responded with the historical." J. Barbey d'Aurevilly, Joseph de Maistre, Blanc 
de Saint-Bonnet, Lacordaire, Gratry, Caro (Paris, 1910), p. 9. [J41,4] 

"Some, like Baudelaire, . . . identified the demon, staggered but reoriented them- 
selves, and once more honored God. It would nonetheless be unjust to expect from 
these precursors a surrender of the human faculties as complete as that required, 
for example, in the sort of mysterious dawn it seems we have begun to live at 
present." Stanislas Fumet, Notre Baudelaire [series entitled he Roseau d'or, vol. 
8] (Paris, 1926), p. iii. [ J41,5] 

"This great poetic success thus represents — if we add to these 1,500 copies the 
print-run of 1,000, plus the overruns from the first edition — a sum total of 2,790 
copies maximum in circulation. What other poet of our day, except Victor Hugo, 
could boast of such a demand for his work?" A. de la Fineliere and Georges 
Descaux, Charles Baudelaire [series entitled Essais de bibliographic contempo- 
raine, vol. 1] (Paris, 1868). Note on the second edition of Les Fleurs du mal. 


Poe: "Cyrano de Bergerac become a pupil of the astronomer Arago" — Journal des 
Goncourt, July 16, 1856. 203 — "If Edgar Poe dethroned Walter Scott and Merimee, 
if realism and bohemianism triumphed all down the line, if certain poems about 
which I have nothing to say (for fairness bids me be silent) were taken seriously by 
. . . honest and well-intentioned men, then this would no longer he decadence but 
an orgy." Pontmartin, he Spectateur, September 19, 1857; cited in Leon Lemon- 
nier, Edgar Poe et la critique franqaise de 1845 a 1875 (Paris, 1928), pp. 187, 214. 


On allegory: "Limp arms, like weapons dropped by one who flees." 20 ' [ J41a,2] 

Swinburne appropriates for himself the thesis that art has nothing to do with 
morality. [J41a,3] 

"Les Fleurs du mal are a cathedral." Ernest Raynaud, Ch. Baudelaire (Paris, 
1922), p. 305 (citing Gonzague de Reynold, Charles Baudelaire). [J41a,4] 

"Baudelaire frets and torments himself in producing the least word. . . . For him, 
art 'is a duel in which the artist shrieks with terror before being overcome.'" 2115 
Ernest Raynaud, Ch. Baudelaire (Paris, 1922), pp. 317-318. [ J41a,5] 

Raynaud recognizes the incompatibility of Baudelaire and Gautier. He devotes a 
long chapter to this (pp. 310-345). [J41a,6] 

"Baudelaire submitted to the requirements of . . . buccaneer editors who ex- 
ploited the vanity of socialites, amateurs, and novices, and accepted manuscripts 

only if one took out a subscription." Ernest Raynaud, Ch. Baudelaire (Paris, 
1922), p. 319. Baudelaire's own conduct is the complement of this state of affairs. 
He would offer the same manuscript to several different journals and authorize 
reprints without acknowledging them as such. [J41a,7] 

Baudelaire's essay of 1859 on Gautier: "Gautier . . . could not have misinterpreted 
the piece. This is made clear by the fact that, in writing the preface to the 1863 
edition of Les Fleurs du mal, he wittily repaid Baudelaire for his essay." Ernest 
Raynaud, Ch. Baudelaire (Paris, 1922), p. 323. [J41a,8] 

"In other respects, what witnesses most tellingly to the evil spell of those times is 
the story of Balzac, . . . who . . . all his life fairly cudgeled his brains to master a 
style, without ever attaining one. . . . [Note:] The discordancy of those times is 
underscored by the fact that the prisons of La Roquette and Mazas were built with 
the same gusto with which Liberty Trees were planted everywhere. Bonapartist 
propaganada was harshly suppressed, but the ashes of Napoleon were brought 
home. . . . The center of Paris was cleared and its streets were opened up, but the 
city was strangled with a belt of fortifications." Ernest Raynaud, Ch. Baudelaire 
(Paris, 1922), pp. 287-288. [J41a,9] 

After referring to the marriage of ancient Olympus with the wood sprites and 
fairies of Banville: "For his part, little wishing to join the ever-swelling procession 
of imitators on the high road of Romanticism, Charles Baudelaire looked about 
him for a path to originality. . . . Where to cast his lot? Great was his indeci- 
sion. . . . Then he noticed that Christ, Jehovah, Mary, Mary Magdalene, the an- 
gels, and 'their phalanxes' all occupied a place in this poetry, but that Satan never 
appeared in it. An error in logic; he resolved to correct this. . . . Victor Hugo had 
made la diablerie a fantastic setting for some ancient legends. Baudelaire, in con- 
trast, actually incarcerated modern man — the man of the nineteenth century — in 
the prison of hell." Alcide Dusolier, Nos Gens de lettres (Paris, 1864), pp. 105-106 
("M. Charles Baudelaire"). 


"He certainly would have made an excellent reporter for die witchcraft trials." 
Alcide Dusolier, Nos Gem de lettres (Paris, 1864), p. 109 ("M. Ch. B."). Baudelaire 
must have enjoyed reading that. [ J42,2] 

With Dusolier, considerable insight into details, but total absence of any perspec- 
tive on the whole: "Obscene mysticism, or, if you prefer, mystical obscenity — 
here, I have said and I repeat, is the double character of Les Fleurs du mal." Alcide 
Dusolier, Nos Gens de lettres (Paris, 1864), p. 1 12. [ J42,3] 

"We would reserve nothing, not even praise. I attest then to the presence, in 
M. Baudelaire's poetic gallery, of certain tableaux parisiens (I would have pre- 
ferred eaux-fortes <etchings> as a more accurate and more characteristic term) 

possessing great vigor and marvelous precision." Alcide Dusolier, ISos Gens de 
lettres (Paris, 1864), pp. 112-113 ("Meryon"). [ J42,4] 

There is a reference in Dusolier, apropos of "Femmes damnees," to La Religieuse 
<The Nun> — but Diderot is not mentioned. [J42,5] 

A further judgment from Dusolier (p. 114); "But can one say, 'Here is a poet'? 
^es, if a rhetor were an orator." The legend about the relation between verse and 
prose in Baudelaire goes back to Dusolier. Shock! [J42,6] 

Closing words: "If I had to sum up in a phrase what Baudelaire is by nature and 
what he would like to persuade us that he is, I would say without any hesitation: he 
is a hysterical Boileau. / May 6, 1863." Alcide Dusolier, Nos Gens de lettres 
(Paris, 1864), p. 119. [J42,7] 

Baudelaire's horoscope, prepared for Raynaud by Paul Flambart: "The psycho- 
logical enigma of Baudelaire is seen almost entirely in this alliance of two things 
ordinarily the least suited to being linked together: a wonderfully fluent poetic 
gift and a crushing pessimism." Ernest Raynaud, Ch. Baudelaire (Paris, 1922), 
p. 54. The Baudelairean psychological antinomy in its tritest formulation. 


"Is this to say that we must necessarily assimilate Baudelaire to Dante, as M. de 
Reynold, following the lead of Ernest Raynaud, has done? If it is a question of 
poetic genius, surely admiration . . . can go no further. If it is a question of philo- 
sophical tendency, I would merely remark that Dante . . . , well in advance of his 
time, introduces into his work ideas that are already quite modern, as Lamennais 
has nicely demonstrated, whereas Baudelaire . . . gives full expression to the spirit 
of the Middle Ages and is, accordingly, behind the times. Thus, if the truth be told, 
far from continuing Dante, he differs from him altogether." Paul Souday, "Gon- 
zague de Reynold's Charles Baudelaire'''' (Les Temps, April 21, 1921, "Les 
Livves"). [J42a,l] 

"New editions of Les Fleurs du mal have been announced or are starting to ap- 
pear. Up to now there have been only two on the market, one for six francs, the 
other for three francs fifty. And now one at twenty sous." Paul Souday, "Le Cin- 
quantenaire de Baudelaire" (Le Temps, June 4>, 1917). 2 " r ' [ J42a,2] 

According to Souday — in a review of Baudelaire's letters (Le Temps, August 17, 
1917) — Baudelaire earned a total of 15,000 francs in twenty-five years. [J42a,3] 

"These sturdy ships, with their air of idleness and nostalgia." 20 ' [J42a,4] 

Thesis of Paul Desjardins: "Baudelaire is lacking in verve — that is to say, he has 
no ideas hut only sensations." Paul Desjardins, "Charles Baudelaire," Revue 
bleue (Paris, 1887), p. 22. [J42a,5] 

"Baudelaire does not give us a lifelike representation of objects; he is more con- 
cerned to steep the image in memory than to embellish or portray it." Paul Des- 
jardins, "Charles Baudelaire," Revue bleue (Paris, 1887), p. 23. [J42a,6] 

Souday tries to dismiss the Christian velleities of Baudelaire with a reference to 
Pascal. [J42a,7] 

Kafka says: dependency keeps you young. [J42a,8] 

"Tliis sensation is then renewed ad infinitum through astonishment. . . . All of a 
sudden, Baudelaire draws hack from what is most familiar to him and eyes it in 
horror. . . . He draivs bach from himself; he looks upon himself as something quite 
new and prodigiously interesting, although a little unclean: 'Lord give me strength 
and courage to behold / My body and my heart without disgust!"' 208 Paul Des- 
jardins, "Charles Baudelaire," Revue bleue (Paris, 1887), p. 18. [J42a,9] 

Baudelaire's fatalism: "At the time of the coup d'etat in December, he felt a sense 
of outrage. 'What a disgrace!' he cried at first; then he came to see things 'from a 
providential perspective' and resigned himself like a monk." Desjardins, "Charles 
Baudelaire," Revue bleue (1887), p. 19. [J42a,10] 

Baudelaire — according to Desjardins — unites the sensibility of the Marquis de 
Sade with the doctrines of Jansenius. [ J43.1] 

"True civilization . . . has nothing to do with . . . table-turning" 209 — an allusion to 
Hugo. [J43.2] 

"Que diras-tu ce soir . . ." <What Will You Say Tonight . . .> invoked as the poem 
of a "man in whom a decided aptitude for the most arduous speculations did not 
exclude a poetry that was solid, warm, colorful, essentially original and humane." 
Charles Barhara, L'Assassinat du Pont-Rouge (Paris, 1859), p. 79 (the sonnet, 
pp. 82-83). [J43.3] 

Barres: "In him the simplest word betrays the effort by which he attained so high 
a level." Cited in Gide, "Baudelaire et M. Faguet," ISouvelle Revue franqaise 
(Novemher 1, 1910), p. 513. 210 [J43,4] 

"A phrase of Brunetiere's is even more to our purpose: '. . . He lacks animation 
and imagination.' . . . Agreed that he lacks animation and imagination. . . . The 
question arises (since, after all, we do have Les Fleurs du mal) whether it is indeed 
essentially the imagination which makes the poet; or, since MM. Faguet and 
Brunetiere certainly are in favor of giving the name of poetry to a kind of versified 
oratory, whether we would not do well to hail Baudelaire as something other and 
more than a poet: the first artist in poetry." Andre Gide, "Baudelaire et 
M. Faguet," Nouvelle Revue franqaise, 2 (Novemher 1, 1910), pp. 513-514. Gide 

quotes, in connection with this, Baudelaire's formula, "The imagination, that 
queen of the faculties," and concedes that the poet was unaware of the true state of 
affairs (p. 517). 2 " [J43.5] 

"The seeming inappropriateness of terms, which will irritate some critics so much, 
that skillful impreciseness of which Racine already made such masterly use, . . . 
that air-space, that interval, hetween image and idea, hetween the word and the 
thing, is just where there is room for the poetic emotion to come and dwell." 
A. Gide, "Baudelaire et M. Faguet," Nouvelle Revue franqaise, 2 (Novemher 1, 
1910), p. 512. 212 [J43,6] 

"Enduring fame is promised only to those writers who can offer to successive 
generations a nourishment constantly renewed; for every generation arrives on 
the scene with its own particular hunger." A. Gide, "Baudelaire et M. Faguet," 
Nouvelle Revue franqaise, 2 (November 1, 1910), p. 503. 213 [J43.7] 

Faguet complains of the lack of movement in Baudelaire, and Gide, making refer- 
ence to Baudelaire's "I hate all movement" and to the iterative poems, remarks: 
"As if the greatest novelty of his art had not heen to immobilize his poems, to 
develop them in depth!" Gide, "Baudelaire et M. Faguet," Nouvelle Revue 
franqaise, 2 (November 1, 1910), pp. 507, 508. 21 1 [J43.8] 

Of the line, "Limp arms ..." Proust says, in the preface to <Paul Morand,> 
Tendres Stocks <Paris, 1921>, p. 15, that it sounds like something from Racine's 
Britannicus™ — The heraldic character of the image! [J43a,l] 

Very astute judgment by Proust on Sainte-Beuve's behavior toward Baudelaire, 
in the preface to Tendres Stocks. 216 [J43a,2] 

Of those "tunes . . . granting a kind of glory to the crowd," Proust remarks (<"A 
Propos de Baudelaire," Nouvelle Revue franqaise [June 1, 1921], > p. 646): "It 
would seem impossible to better that." 217 [ J43a,3] 

"I have not had time to speak here of the part played in Baudelaire's work hy 
ancient cities, or of the scarlet note they strike, here and there, in the fabric of his 
poetry." Marcel Proust, "A Propos de Baudelaire," Nouvelle Revue franqaise 
(June 1, 1921), p. 656. 218 [J43a,4] 

Proust thinks that the concluding lines of both <Racine's> Andromache and 
<Baudelaire's> "Le Voyage" fall Hat. He is offended hy the extreme simplicity of 
these endings. 2W [J43a,5] 

"A capital is not wholly necessary to man." Senancour, Oberrnann, ed. Fasquelle 
(Paris <1901>), p. 248. 22 " [J43a,6] 

"He was the first ... to show the woman in her bedroom, in the midst not only of 
her jewels and perfumes, but of her makeup, her linens, her dresses, trying to 
decide if she prefers a scalloped hem or a straight hem. He compares her ... to 
animals — to the elephant, the monkey, and the snake." John Charpentier, "La 
Poesie britannique et Baudelaire," Mercure de France, 147 (May 1, 1921), p. 673. 


On allegory: "His greatest glory, wrote Theophile Gautier [in the preface to the 
1863 edition of Les Fleurs du mal], 'will he to have introduced into the realm of 
stylistic possibilities whole classes of objects, sensations, and effects left unnamed 
by Adam, the great nomenclator.' He names . . . the hopes and regrets, the curiosi- 
ties and fears, that seethe in the darkness of the inner world." John Charpentier, 
"La Poesie britannique et Baudelaire," Mercure de France, 14 7 (May 1, 1921), 
p. 674. [J43a,8] 

"L'Invitation au voyage," translated into Russian by Merezhkovski, became a 
gypsy romance entitled "Holubka mo'ia." ( J43a,9] 

In connection with "L'Irremediable," Crepet (Les Fleurs du mal, ed. Jacques 
Crepet [Paris, 1931], p. 449) cites the following passage from Les Soirees de Saint- 
Petersbourg: "That river which one crosses but once; that pitcher of the 
Danaides, alivays full and ahvays empty; that liver of Tityus, always regenerated 
under the beak of the vulture that alivays devours it anew, . . . — these are so many 
speaking hieroglyphs, about which it is impossible to be mistaken." 221 [ J43a,10] 

Letter to Calonne, director of La Revue contemporaine, on February 11, 1859: 
"The dance of death is not a person but an allegory. It seems to me that it should 
not he capitalized. An extremely well-known allegory." Les Fleurs du mal, ed. 
Crepet (Paris, 1931), p. 459. 222 [ J44.1] 

Regarding "L' Amour dumensonge" <Love of Deceit). From a letter to Alphonse de 
Calonne: "The word 'royal' will help the reader understand the metaphor, which 
transforms memory into a crown of towers, like those that weigh down the brows 
of the goddesses of maturity, of fertility, of tuisdom." Fleurs du mal, ed. Jacques 
Crepet (Paris, 1931), p. 461. 22i [J44,2] 

Planned cycle of poems "Oneirocritie" <Dream Interpretation): "Symptoms of 
ruin. Vast Pelasgic huildings, one on top of the other. Apartments, rooms, temples, 
galleries, stairways, caeca, belvederes, lanterns, fountains, statues. — Fissures 
and cracks. Dampness resulting from a reservoir situated near the sky. — How to 
warn people and nations'? Let us whisper warnings into the ears of the most intelli- 
gent. / High up, a column cracks and its two ends shift. Nothing has collapsed as 
yet. I can no longer find the way out. I go down, then climb back up. A tower. — 
Labyrinth. I never succeeded in leaving. I live forever in a building on the point of 
collapsing, a building undermined by a secret malady. — I reckon up in my mind, 

to amuse myself, whether such a prodigious mass of stones, marble blocks, stat- 
ues, and walls, which are all about to collide with one another, will be greatly 
sullied by that multitude of brains, human flesh, and shattered bones. — I see such 
terrible things in my dreams that sometimes I wish I could sleep no more, if only I 
could he sure of not becoming too weary." Nadar, Charles Baudelaire intime 
(Paris, 1911), pp. 136-137 [<Baudelaire, Oeuvres,> ed. Le Dantec, vol. 2, 
p. 696]. 22 ' 1 [J44,3] 

Proust on "Le Balcon": "Many of the lines in Baudelaire's 'Le Balcon' convey a 
similar impression of mystery" (p. 644). This in contrast to Hugo: "Victor Hugo 
always does wonderfully what he has to do. . . . But the fabricating — even when it 
is a fabricating of the impalpable — is always visible." Marcel Proust, "A Propos 
de Baudelaire," Nouvelle Revue franqaise, 16 (Paris, 1921), pp. 643-644. 225 


On the iterative poems: "The world of Baudelaire is a strange sectioning of time in 
which only the red-letter days can appear. This explains such frequent expressions 
as 'If some evening,' and so on." M. Pronst, "A Propos de Baudelaire," Nouvelle 
Revue franqaise, 16 (June 1, 1921), p. 652. 226 [J44,5] 

Meryon's letter of March 31, 1860, to Nadar: he does not wish to be photographed 
by him. [J44,6] 

"As to Baudelaire's 'stage properties' — . . . they might provide a useful lesson for 
those elegant ladies of the past twenty years, who . . . would do well to consider, 
when they contemplate the alleged purity of style which they have achieved with 
such infinite trouble, that a man may be the greatest and most artistic of writers, 
yet describe nothing but beds with 'adjustable curtains' ('Pieces condamnees'), 
halls like conservatories ('Une Martyre'), beds filled with subtle scents, sofas deep 
as tombs, whatnots loaded with flowers, lamps burning so briefly ('Pieces condam- 
nees') that the only light comes from the coal fire. Baudelaire's world is a place to 
which, at rare moments, a perfumed breeze from the outer air brings refreshment 
and a sense of magic, . . . thanks to those porticoes . . . 'open onto unknown skies' 
('La Mort'), or 'wliich the suns of the sea tinged with a thousand fires' ('La Vie 
anterieure')." M. Proust, "A Propos de Baudelaire," Nouvelle Revue franqaise, 
16 (June 1, 1921), p. 652. 227 [J44a,l] 

On the "Pieces condamnees": "They take their place once more among the grand- 
est poems in the book, like those crystal-clear waves that heave majestically after 
a night of storm, and, by interposing their crests between the spectator and the 
immense sweep of the ocean, give a sense of space and distance to the view." 
Proust, "A Propos de Baudelaire," Nouvelle Revue franqaise, 16 (June 1, 1921), 
p. 655. 22 " [J44a,2] 

"How did he come to be so interested in lesbians . . . ? When Vigny, raging against 
women, thought to lind the explanation of the mystciry of their sex in the fact that 

women give suck . . . , in their psychology ('Always the companion whose heart is 
untrue'), it is easy to see why, in his frustrated and jealous passion, he could write: 
'Woman will have Gomorrah, and Man will have Sodom . ' But he does, at least, see 
the two sexes at odds, facing each other as enemies across a great gulf. . . . But this 
did not hold true of Baudelaire. . . . This 'connection' between Sodom and Go- 
morrah is what, in the final section of my novel, . . . I have shown in the person of 
a brutish creature, Charles Morel (it is usually to brutish creatures that this part 
is allotted). But it would seem that Baudelaire cast himself for it, and looked on the 
role as a privilege. It would be intensely interesting to know why he chose to 
assume it, and how well he acquitted himself. What is comprehensible in a Charles 
Morel becomes profoundly mysterious in the author of Les Fleurs du mal. " Marcel 
Proust, "A Propos de Baudelaire," ISouvelle Revue frangaise, 16 (June 1, 1921), 
pp. 655-656. 22 '' [J44a,3] 

Louis Menard — who, under the pseudonym Louis de Senneville, had published delivre <Prometheus Unbound) — in La Revue philosophique et re- 
ligieuse of September 1857 (cited in Les Fleurs du mal, ed. Crepet [Paris, 1930], 
pp. 362-363): "Though he talks incessantly of the vermin and scorpions in his soul 
and takes himself for the avatar of all vices, it is easy to see that his principal 
defect is an overly libertine imagination — a defect all too common among those 
erudite persons who have passed their youth in seclusion. . . . Let him enter into 
the community of human life, and he will be able to find a characteristically ele- 
vated form for vihrant, wholesome creations. He will he a paterfamilias and will 
publish books of the sort that could be read to his children. Until then, he will 
remain a schoolboy of 1828, suffering from what Geoffroy Saint-Hilaire calls ar- 
rested development." [J45,l] 

From the summation delivered by M. Pinard: "I portray evil with its intoxica- 
tions, you say, but also with its miseries and shames. So be it. But what of all those 
many readers for whom you write (for you publish thousands of copies of your 
book, and at a low price) those numerous readers of every class, age, and condi- 
tion? Will they take the antidote of which you speak with such complacency?" 
Cited in Les Fleurs du mal, cd. Crepet (Paris, 1930), p. 334. [J45,2] 

An article by Louis Goudall in Le Figaro of November 4, 1855, opens the way for 
criticisms of "university pedants." Goudall writes, after the publication of poems 
in La Revue des deux mondes: "After the fading of his surprise celebrity, Baudelaire 
will be associated exclusively with the withered fruits of contemporary poetry." 
Cited in Les Fleurs du mal, ed. Crepet (Paris, 1930), p. 306. [J45.3] 

In 1850, Asselineau saw Baudelaire with a copy of the poems inscribed by a callig- 
rapher and bound in two gilded quarto volumes. [J45,4] 

Crepet (Fleurs du mal, ed. Crepet, p. 300) says that, around 1846, many of 
Baudelaire's friends knew his poems by heart. Only three of the poems had been 
published at that point. [J45,5] 

May 1852: "Les Limbes <Limbo>: intimate poems of Georges Durant, collected and 
published by bis friend Th. Veron." [J45,6] 

Announcing Les Limbes in the second issue of L'Echo des marchands devin: "Les 
Limbes: poems by Charles Baudelaire. The book will be published on February 
24, 1849, in Paris and Leipzig." [J45.7] 

Leconte de Lisle in La Revue europeenne of December 1, 1861. Among other 
things, he speaks of "that strange mania for dressing up the discoveries of mod- 
ern industry in bad verse." He refers to Baudelaire's oeuvre as "stamped with the 
vigorous seal of long meditation. "The Inferno plays a big part in his review. Cited 
in Les Fleurs du mal, ed. Crepet, pp. 385, 386. [ J45a,l] 

Swinburne's article in The Spectator of September 6, 1862. The author was 
twenty-live years old at the time. [ J45a,2] 

Paris, for Gonzague de Reynold, as "antechamber to the Baudelairean Hell." 
Turn to the second chapter, "La Vision de Paris," in part 2 (entitled "L'Art et 
l'oeuvre") of his book Charles Baudelaire (Paris and Geneva, 1920), and you find 
nothing but a longwinded, subaltern paraphrase of certain poems. [ J45a,3] 

Villon and Baudelaire: "In the one, we find the mystical and macabre Christianity 
of an age in the process of losing its faith; in the other, the more or less secularized 
Christianity of an age seeking to recover its faith." Gonzague de Reynold, Charles 
Baudehire (Paris and Geneva, 1920), p. 220. [J45a,4] 

Reynold draws a schematic parallel between the fifteenth and the nineteenth cen- 
turies as periods of decadence, in which an extreme realism prevails alongside an 
extreme idealism, together with unrest, pessimism, and egoism. [ J45a,5] 

Imitatio Christi, book 1, paragraph 20, "De amore solitudinus et silentii": "Quid 
potes alibi videre, quod hie non vides? Ecce caelum et terra et omnia elemental 
nam ex istis omnia sunt facta." 230 [J45a,6] 

Mallarme, in the opening piece of Divagations, "Formerly, in the margins of a 
Baudelaire": "This torrent of tears illuminated by the bengal light of the artificer 
Satan, who comes from behind." Stephane Mallarme, Divagations (Paris, 1897), 
p. 60. [J45a,7] 

December 4, 1847: "After New Year's Day, I am starting a new kind of writing, . . . 
the Novel. It is not necessary for me to point out to you the gravity, the beauty, and 
the infinite possibilities of that art." Ch<arles> B<audelaire>, Lettres a sa mere 
(Paris, 1932), p. 26. 2:il [J45a,8] 

December 8, 1848: "Another reason I would be happy if you were able to comply 
with my request is that I very much fear a revolutionary uprising, and nothing is 

more deplorable than to be utterly without money at such a time." Ch. B., Lettres 
a sa mere (Paris, 1932), p. 33. 232 [J45a,9] 

"From the end of the Second Empire down to our own day, the evolution in 
philosophy and the blooming of Les Fleurs du mal have been concomitant. This 
explains the peculiar destiny of a work whose fundamental parts, though still 
enveloped in shadow, are becoming clearer with every passing day." Alfred Capus, 
Le Gaulois, 1921 (cited in Les Fleurs dumal, ed. Crepet [Paris, 1931], p. 50). 


On March 27, 1852, he mentions to his mother some "sickly articles, hastily writ- 
ten." (Charles Baudelaire,> Lettres a sa mere (Paris, 1932), p. 39. 233 [ J46.2] 

March 27, 1852: "To beget children is the only thing which gives moral intelligence 
to the female. As for young women without status and without children, they show 
nothing but coquetry, implacability, and elegant debauchery." Lettres m. sa mere 
(Paris, 1932), p. 43. 2:i ' 1 [J46,3] 

In a letter to his mother, Baudelaire refers to the reading room, in addition to the 
cafe, as a refuge in which to work. [ J46,4] 

December 4, 1854: "Should I resign myself to going to bed and staying there for 
lack of clothes?" Lettres a sa mere (Paris, 1932), p. 74. 235 (On p. 191, he asks for 
the loan of some handkerchiefs.) [J46,5] 

December 20, 1855, after toying with the idea of petitioning for a subvention: 
"Never will my name appear on filthy government paper." Lettres a sa mere, 
p. 83. 23f ' [J46.6] 

Problematic passage from a letter of July 9, 1857, concerning Les Fleurs du mal: 
"Moreover, alarmed myself by the horror I was going to inspire, I cut out a third of 
it at the proof stage." Lettres a sa mere, p. 110. 2 ' !7 [J46,7] 

Spleen de Paris appears for a time, in 1857 (see p. Ill, letter of July 9, 1857), to 
have had the title Poemes nocturnes. [J46,8] 

Planned essay (Lettres a. sa mere, p. 139) on Machiavelli and Condorcet. [ J46.9] 

May 6, 1861: '"And what about God!' you will say. I wish with all my heart (with 
what sincerity I alone can know) to believe that an exterior invisible being is 
concerned with my fate. But what can I do to make myself believe it?" Lettres a sa 
mere, p. 173. 2:i,i [J46.10] 

May 6, 1861: "I am forty years old and I cannot think of school without pain, any 
more than I can think of the fear which my stepfather inspired in me." Lettres a sa 
mere, p. 176. 2:w [J46a,l] 

July 10, 1861, on the planned cle luxe edition: "Where is the mama who will give 
Les Fleurs du mal as a present to her children? And where is the papa?" Lettres a 
sa mere, p. 186. [J46a,2] 

His eyes strained with working in the Louvre: "Two bloodshot goggle-eyes." Let- 
tres a sa mere, p. 191. [ J46a,3] 

On Les Miserables — August 11, 1862 : "The book is disgusting and clumsy. On this 
score, I've shown that I possess the art of lying." Lettres a sa mere, p. 212. 240 


June 3, 1863. He speaks of Paris, "where I have been bored for months, as no one 
was ever bored before." Lettres a sa mere, p. 218. 241 [ J46a,5] 

Conclusion of "Crepuscule du soir": the muse herself, who turns away from the 
poet to whisper words of inspiration to the air. [ J46a,6] 

Baudelaire planned a "refutation of the preface to the life of Caesar hy Napo- 
leon III." [J46a,7] 

In a letter of May 4, 1865, Baudelaire mentions to his mother an "immensely long" 
article appearing in La Revue germanique. Lettres a sa mere, p. 260. 212 [J46a,8] 

March 5, 1866: "I like nothing so much as to be alone. But that is impossible; and 
it seems that the Baudelaire school exists." Lettres a sa mere, p. 301. 243 [J46a,9] 

December 23, 1865: "If I can ever regain the freshness and energy I've sometimes 
enjoyed, I'll assuage my wrath in horrible hooks. I'd like to set the entire human 
race against me. That offers a pleasure that could console me for everything." 
Lettres a sa mere, p. 278. 244 [ J46a,10] 

"As a man advances through life . . . , what the world has agreed to call 'beauty' 
loses much of its importance. . . . Henceforth beauty will be no more than the 
promise of happiness . . . . Beauty will he the form which promises the most kind- 
ness, the most loyalty to an oath, the most honesty in fulfilling a pledge, the most 
subtlety in understanding relationships" (p. 424). And a little further on, with 
reference to "L'Ecole paienne," to which these lines written in an album constitute 
a note: "How could I possihly succeed in convincing a young scatterhrain that no 
sensual desire is mingled with the irresistible sympathy I feel for old women — for 
those creatures who have suffered greatly through their lovers, their husbands, 
their children, and also through their own mistakes?" Ch. B., Oeuvres completes, 
ed. Le Dantec, vol. 2, pp. 424-425. 2k '> [J47.1] 

"For some time, . . . it [has seemed] t o me that I am having a bad dream, that I am 
hurtling through space and that a multitude of wooden, golden, and silver idols 
are falling with me, tumbling after me, humping into me, and breaking my head 

and back." Ch. B., Oeuvres completes, vol. 2, pp. 420-421 ("L'Ecole 
pai'enne"). 240 Compare the anecdote about Baudelaire and the Mexican idol 
<J17a,2?>. [J47,2] 

Toward the end of the Second Empire, as the regime relaxes its pressure, the 
theory of / 'art pour I'art suffers a loss in prestige. [J47,3] 

From the argument of the Guys essay, it would appear that Baudelaire's fascina- 
tion with this artist was connected above all with his handling of backgrounds, 
which differs little from the handling of backgrounds in the theater. But because 
these pictures, unlike scenery on a stage, are to be viewed from close up, the 
magic of distance is canceled for the viewer without his having to renounce 
the judgment of distance. In the essay on Guys, Baudelaire has characterized the 
gaze which here and in other places he himself turns toward the distance. Baude- 
laire dwells on the expression of the oriental courtesan: "She directs her gaze at 
the horizon, like a beast of prey; the same wildness, the same indolent distrac- 
tion, and also at times the same fixity of attention." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, 
p. 359. 247 [J47.4] 

In his poem L'Heautontimoroumenos" <The Self -Tormentor), Baudelaire himself 
speaks of his shrill voice. [J47,5] 

A decisive value is to be accorded Baudelaire's efforts to capture the gaze in 
which the magic of distance is extinguished. (Compare "L' Amour du men- 
songe.") Relevant here: my definition of the aura as the aura of distance opened 
up with the look that awakens in an object perceived. 248 [J47.6] 

The gaze in which the magic of distance is extinguished: "Let your eyes plunge 
into the fixed stare / of satyresses or water sprites" ("L'Avertisseur" <The Look- 
out)). 2 " [J47a,l] 

Among the prose poems planned but left unwritten is "La Fin du monde." Its basic 
theme is perhaps best indicated in the following passage from "Fusees," no. 22: 
"The world is about to come to an end. The only reason it should continue is that 
it exists. What a weak argument, compared with all the arguments to the contrary, 
and especially the following: 'What, in future, is the world to do in the sight of 
heaven?' For, supposing it continued to have material existence, would this exist- 
ence be worthy of the name, or of the Encyclopedia of History? . . . For my part, I 
who sometimes feel myself cast in the ridiculous role of prophet, I know that I shall 
never receive so much as a doctor's charity. Lost in this base world, jostled by the 
mob, I am like a weary man who sees behind him, in the depths of the years, only 
disillusionment and bitterness, and in front of him only a tempest that brings 
nothing new. ... I seem to have wandered off. . . . Nevertheless, I shall let these 
pages stand — because I wish to set an exact date to my anger." Ch. B., Oeuvres, 

vol. 2, pp. 639, 641-642. 25u — In the manuscript, there is a variant for the last 
word: "sadness." [J47a,2] 

The piece that begins, "The world is coming to an end" ("Fusees" no. 22), 
contains, interwoven with the apocalyptic reverie, a frightfully bitter critique of 
Second Empire society. (It reminds one here and there, perhaps, of Nietzsche's 
delineation of "the last man") This critique displays, in part, prophetic features. 
Of the coming society, it is said that "nothing in the sanguinary, blasphemous, or 
unnatural dreams of the Utopians can be compared to what will actually hap- 
pen. . . . Rulers will be compelled, in order to maintain their position and create a 
semblance of order, to resort to methods that would appall present-day mankind, 
hardened as it is. . . . Justice — if, in d)is fortunate epoch, any justice can still 
exist — will forbid the existence of citizens who are unable to make a fortune. . . . 
Those times are perhaps quite close at hand. Who knows whether they are not 
here already — whether it is not simply the coarsening of our natures that keeps 
us from noticing what sort of atmosphere we already breathe?" Ch. B., Oeuvres, 
vol. 2, pp. 640-641. 2r " [J47a,3] 

"The gist of it all, in the eyes of history and of the French people, is that Napo- 
leon Ill's great claim to renown will have been that he showed how anybody at all, 
if only he gets hold of the telegraph and the printing presses, can govern a great 
nation. Anyone who believes that such things can be done without the people's 
permission is an imbecile." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 655 ("Mon Coeur mis a nu," 
no. 44). 252 [J48.1] 

"A sense of solitude, since my childhood. Despite my family, and especially amid 
companions — a sense of an eternally lonely destiny." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, 
p. 645 ("Mon Coeur mis a nu"). Mi [J48.2] 

"Truth, for all its multiplicity, is not two-faced." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 63 
("Salon de 1846: Aux Bourgeois"). 254 [ J48,3] 

"Allegory is one of the noblest genres of art." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 30 
("Salon de 1845"). 255 [J48.4] 

"The will must have become a highly developed and productive faculty to he able 
to give its stamp ... to works ... of the second rank. . . . The spectator enjoys the 
effort, and his eye drinks in the sweat." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, <p. 26> ("Salon de 
1845"). [J48.5] 

"The idea of progress. This dim heacon, an invention of contemporary philoso- 
phism, licensed without the sanction of Nature or God — this modern lantern casts 
dark shadows over every object of knowledge. Liberty vanishes; punishment dis- 
appears." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 148 ("Exposition Universale, 1855"). ' m 


"Stupidity is often the ornament of beauty. It is what gives to the eyes that gloomy 
limpidity of blackish pools and that oily calm of tropical seas." Ch. B., Oeuvres, 
vol. 2, p. 622 ("Choix de maximes consolantes sur l'amour"). 257 [ J48,7] 

"A last, general rule: in love, beware of the moon and the stars; beware of the 
Venus de Milo." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 624. ("Choix de maximes consolantes 
sur l'amour"). 258 [ J48.8] 

Baudelaire was always after the gist. His epoch forbade him to formulate it in 
such a way that its social bearing would become immediately intelligible. Where 
he sought in fact to make it comprehensible — in the essays on Dupont, as in the 
theoretical musings in a Christian vein — he instead lost sight of it. Nevertheless, 
the formulation he attains at one point in this context — "How much can you get 
for a lyre, at the pawnshop?" — gives apt expression to his insistence on an art 
that can prove itself before society. The sentence from Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, 
p. 422 ("L'Ecole paienne"). 259 [J48,9] 

With regard to allegory: "What do you expect from heaven or from the stupidity of 
the public? Enough money to raise altars to Priapus and Bacchus in your attics? 
... I understand the rage of iconoclasts and of Muslims against images. I admit all 
the remorse of Saint Augustine for the too great pleasure of the eyes." Ch. B., 
Oeuvres, vol. 2, pp. 422, 423 ("L'Ecole paienne"). 2 "" [J48a,l] 

It belongs to the physiognomic profile of Baudelaire that he fosters the gestures of 
the poet at the expense of the professional insignia of the writer. In this, he is like 
the prostitute who cultivates her physiognomy as sexual object or as "beloved" in 
order to conceal her professional dealings. [J48a,2] 

If the poems of Les Epaves, in Proust's great image, 261 are the foamy wave crests in 
the ocean of Baudelairean poetry, then the poems of "Tableaux parisiens" are its 
safe harbor. In particular, these poems contain hardly any echo of the revolution- 
ary storms that were breaking over Paris. In this respect they resemble the poetry 
of Heym, composed forty years later, in which the corresponding state of affairs 
has now risen to consciousness while the "Marseillaise" has been interred. The 
last two tercets of the sonnet "Berlin III," which describes the sunset in Berlin in 
winter, read as follows: 

A paupers' graveyard upheaves black, stone after stone; 
The dead look out on the red sunset 
From their hole. It tastes like strong wine. 

They sit knitting all along the wall, 
Sooty caps on their naked temples, 
To the old attack song, the "Marseillaise." 

GeorgHeym, Dichtungen (Munich, 1922), p. 11. 


A decisive line for the comparison with Blanqui: "When earth becomes a trick- 
ling dungeon" ("Spleen IV") , 262 [ J48a,4] 

The idea of the immobilization of nature appears, perhaps as refuge for the 
prescient imagination immediately before the war, in poems by Georg Heym, 
whose images the spleen of Baudelaire could not yet have touched: "But the seas 
congeal. On the waves / The ships hang rotting, morose." Georg Heym, Dich- 
tungen (Munich, 1922), p. 73 (collection entitled Umbra vitae). [J48a,5] 

It would be a big mistake to see in the theoretical positions on art taken by 
Baudelaire after 1852 — positions which differ so markedly from those of the 
period around 1848 — the fruits of a development. (There are not many artists 
whose work attests so little to a development as that of Baudelaire.) These 
positions represent theoretical extremes, of which the dialectical mediation is 
given by Baudelaire's whole oeuvre, without being entirely present to his con- 
scious reflection. The mediation resides in the destructive and purificatory char- 
acter of the work. This art is useful insofar as it destroys. Its destructive fury is 
directed not least at the fetishistic conception of art. Thus it serves "pure" art, in 
the sense of a purified art. [ J 4 9,1] 

The first poems of Les Flairs du mal are all devoted to the figure of the poet. From 
them it emerges, precisely insofar as the poet makes appeal to a station and a 
task, that society no longer has such things to confer. [ J49,2] 

An examination of those places where the "I" appears in the poems of Baudelaire 
might result in a possible classificatory grouping. In the first five poems of Les 
Flews du mal, it surfaces but a single time. And further on, it is not unusual to 
find poems in which the "I" does not occur. More essential — and, at the same 
time, more deliberate — is the way in other poems, like "Reversibilite" or "Har- 
monie du soir," it is kept in the background. [ J49,3] 

"La Belle Dorothee" — she must buy back her eleven-year-old sister. 263 [J49.4] 

"I assure you that the seconds are now strongly accented, and rush out of the clock 
crying, 'I am Life, unbearable and implacable Life!'" Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 1, 
p. 411 ("La Chambre double"). 251 [J49,5] 

From "Quelques mots d'introduction" to the "Salon de 1845": "And at the very 
outset, with reference to that impertinent designation, 'the bourgeois,' we beg to 
state that we in no way share the prejudices of our great confreres in the world of 
art, who for some years now have been striving their utmost to cast anathema upon 
that inoffensive being. . . . And, finally, the ranks of the artists themselves contain 
so many hourgeois that it is better, on the whole, to suppress a word which does not 
deline any particular vice of caste." Oeuvres, vol. 2, pp. 15-16. 2f,:j The same ten- 
dency in the preface, "Aux Bourgeois," of the "Salon de 1846." [J49,6] 

The figure of the lesbian woman belongs among Baudelaire's heroic exemplars. 
[He himself gives expression to this in the language of his satanism. It would be 
no less comprehensible in an unmetaphysical critical language.] The nineteenth 
century began openly and without reserve to include the woman in the process 
of commodity production. The theoreticians were united in their opinion that 
her specific femininity was thereby endangered; masculine traits must necessarily 
manifest themselves in women after a while. Baudelaire affirms these traits. At 
the same time, however, he seeks to free them from the domination of the 
economy. Hence the purely sexual accent which he comes to give this develop- 
mental tendency in woman. The paradigm of the lesbian woman bespeaks the 
ambivalent position of "modernity" vis-a-vis technological development. (What 
he could not forgive in George Sand, presumably, was her having profaned, 
through her humanitarian convictions, this image whose traits she bore. Baude- 
laire says that she was worse than Sade.) 26(i [ J49a,l] 

The concept of exclusive rights was not so widely accepted in Baudelaire's day as 
it is today. Baudelaire often republished his poems two or three times without 
having anyone take offense. He ran into difficulties with this only toward the end 
of his life, with the Petits Poemes en prose. [ J49a,2] 

From his seventeenth year, Baudelaire led the life of a <litterateur?>. One cannot 
say that he ever thought of himself as an "intellectual" or engaged himself on 
behalf of "the life of the mind." The registered trademark for artistic production 
had not yet been invented. (In this situation, moreover, his imperious need to 
distinguish himself and withdraw worked to his advantage.) He refused to go 
along with the defamation of the bourgeois, under the banner of which there was 
mobilized a solidarity of artists and men of letters that he considered suspect. 
Thus, in the "Musee classique du Bazar Bonne-Nouvelle" <Classical Museum of 
the Good-News Bazaao {Oeiwres, vol. 2, p. 61), he writes: "The bourgeois, who 
has few scientific notions, goes where the loud voice of the bourgeois artist 
directs him. — If this voice were suppressed, the grocer would carry E. Delacroix 
around in triumph. The grocer is a great thing, a divine being whom it is neces- 
sary to respect, homo bonae voluntatis!" 267 In more detail a year earlier, in the 
preface to the "Salon de 1845." [J49a,3] 

Baudelaire's eccentric individuality was a mask under which he tried to con- 
ceal — out of shame, you could say — the supra-individual necessity of his way of 
life and, to a certain extent, his life history. [J 50,1] 

To interrupt the course of the world — that was Baudelaire's deepest intention. 
The intention of Joshua. [Not so much the prophetic one: for he gave no thought 
to any sort of reform.] From this intention sprang his violence, his impatience, 
and his anger; from it, too, sprang the ever-renewed attempts to cut the world to 
the heart [or sing it to sleep]. In this intention he provided death with an accom- 
paniment: his encouragement of its work. [J50.2] 

Apropos of "Harmonie du soir" and other iterative poems: Baudelaire notes in 
Poe "repetitions of the same line or of several lines, insistent reiterations of 
phrases which simulate the obesssions of melancholy or of a fixed idea." "Notes 
nouvelles sur Edgar Poe," in ISouvelles Histoires extraordinaires (Paris <1886>), 
p. 22. 26 " Immobilization! [J50.3] 

"Lord give me strength and courage to behold / my body and my heart without 
disgust!" With this, juxtapose: "The dandy should aspire to be sublime, continu- 
ally. He should live and sleep in front of a mirror." Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 643 ("Mon 
Coenr mis a nn," no. 5). The lines of verse are from "Un Voyage a Cy there." 2 * 9 


The close of "La Destruction" (published in 1855 under the title "La Volupte"!) 
presents the image of petrified unrest. ("Was like a Medusa-shield, / image of 
petrified unrest" — Gottfried Keller, "Verlorenes Recht, verlorenes Gluck.") 


On "Le Voyage," opening stanza: the dream of distance belongs to childhood. 
The traveler has seen the far distant, but has lost the belief in distance. [ J50,6] 

Baudelaire — the melancholic, whose star pointed him into the distance. He didn't 
follow it, though. Images of distance appear [in his poems] only as islands loom- 
ing out of the sea of long ago, or the sea of Paris fog. These islands are seldom 
lacking in the Negress. And her violated body is the figure in which the distance 
lays itself at the feet of what Baudelaire found near: the Paris of the Second 
Empire. [J50.7] 

The eye growing dim at the moment of death is the 6V-phenomenon of expiring 
appearance <Schein>. [ J50,8] 

"Les Petites Vieilles" <The Little Old Women): "Their eyes . . . glint like holes 
where water sleeps at night." 27 ' [J50,9] 

Baudelaire's violent temper belongs together with his destructive animus. We get 
nearer the matter when we recognize here, too, in these bursts of anger, a 
"strange sectioning of time." 271 [J50a,l] 

Baudelaire, in his best passages, is occasionally coarse — never sonorous. His 
mode of expression at these points deviates as little from his experience as the 
gestures of a perfect prelate deviate from his person. [J50a,2] 

Although the general contours were by then already lost to view, the concept of 
allegory in the first third of the nineteenth century did not have the disconcerting 
quality that attaches to it today. In his review of Les Poesies de Joseph Delorme, in 
Le Globe of April 11, 1829, Charles Magnin brings together Victor Hugo and 

Sainte-Beuve with the words: "They both proceed almost continually by figures, 
allegories, symbols." <Cited in Charles Augustin Sainte-Beuve,> Vie, poesies et 
pensees de Joseph Delorme (Paris, 1863), vol. 1, p. 295. [J50a,3] 

A comparison between Baudelaire and Sainte-Beuve can unfold only within the 
narrow confines of subject matter and poetic workmanship. For Sainte-Beuve 
was a genial and indeed cozy sort of author. Charles Magnin justly writes in Le 
Globe of April 11, 1829: "His spirit might cloud over for a while, but no sooner 
does it compose itself than a fund of natural benevolence rises to the surface." 
(Here, it is not the benevolence but the surface that is decisive.) "Without doubt, 
this is the source of that sympathy and indulgence which he inspires in us." 
<Cited in> Vie, poesies et pensees de Joseph Delorme (Paris, 1863), vol. 1, p. 294. 


Miserable sonnet by Sainte-Beuve (Les Consolations [Paris, 1863], pp. 262-263) : 
"I love Paris and its beautiful sunsets of autunm," with the closing lines : "And I 
depart, in my thoughts mingling / Paris with an Ithaca of beautiful sunsets." 


Charles Magnin in his review of Les Poesies de Joseph Delorme, in Le Globe, April 
11, 1829: "Doubtless the alexandrine with a variable caesura calls for a stricter 
rhyme." <Cited in> Vie, poesies et pensees de Joseph Delorme (Paris, 1863), vol. 1, 
p. 298. [J50a,6] 

Conception of the poet, according tojoseph Delorme: "The idea of consorting 
with elect beings who sing of their sorrows here below, the idea of groaning in 
harmony to their lead, came to him like a smile amid his suf ferings and lightened 
them a little." Vie, poesies et pensees de Joseph Delorme (Paris, 1863), vol. 1, p. 16. 
The book has an epigraph from Obermann; this fact sets a limit to the influence 
which Obermann could have exercised on Baudelaire. [J51,l] 

Sainte-Beuve, notes Charles Magnin, half approving and half deploring, "de- 
lights in a certain crudity of expression, and abandons himself ... to a sort of 
linguistic shamelessness. . . . The harshest word, however shocking, is almost 
always the word he prefers." Le Globe, April 11, 1829, cited in Vie, poesies et 
pensees de Joseph Delorme (Paris, 1863), vol. 1, p. 296. Close on this (p. 297), 
Magnin reproaches the poet for having presented the girl in the poem "Ma 
Muse" as a consumptive: "We would not mind if the poet showed us his muse 
poor, grieving, or ill-clad. But consumptive!" The consumptive Negress in 
Baudelaire. We get some idea of Sainte-Beuve 's innovations from lines like 
"nearby, the opening of a ravine: / A girl washes threadbare linen there day after 
day" ("Ma Muse," in vol. 1 , p. 93), or, from a suicide fantasy, "Some local fellows, 
I ... I Mixing jeers with their stupid stories, / Will chat idly over my blackened 
remains /Before packing them off to the graveyard in a wheelbarrow" ("Le 
Creux de la vallee," in vol. 1, p. 114). [J51,2] 

Sainte-Beuve's characterization of his own poetry: "I have endeavored ... to be 
original in my fashion, which is humble and bourgeois, . . . calling by their name 
the things of private life, hut preferring the thatched cottage to the boudoir." Vie, 
poesies et pensees de Joseph Delorme (Paris, 1863), vol. 1, p. 170 ("Pensees," no. 
19). [J51.3] 

With Sainte-Beuve, a standard of sensibility: "Ever since our poets, . . . instead of 
saying 'a romantic grove,' a 'melancholy lake,' . . . started saying 'a green grove' 
and 'a blue lake,' alarm has been spreading among the disciples of Madame de 
Stael and the Genevan school; and already complaints can be heard about the 
invasion of a new materialism. . . . Above all, there is a dread of monotony, and it 
seems far too easy and far too simple to say that the leaves are green and the 
waves blue. On this point, perhaps, the adversaries of the picturesque deceive 
themselves. The leaves, in fact, are not always green; the waves not always blue. 
Or rather, we find in nature . . . neither green, nor blue, nor red, properly speak- 
ing; the natural colors of things are colors without names. . . . The picturesque is 
not a box of paints that can be emptied." <Sainte-Beuve, Vie, poesies et pensees de 
Joseph Delorme (Paris, 1863),) pp. 166-167 ("Pensees," no. 16). [J51,4] 

"The alexandrine . . . resembles somewhat a pair of tongs, gleaming and golden, if 
straight and rigid; it is not for rummaging about in nooks and crannies. — Our 
modern verse is to a degree partitioned and articulated in the manner of insects, 
but, like them, it has wings." Vie, poesies et pensees de Joseph Delorme (Paris, 
1863), vol. 1, p. 161 ("Pensees," no. 9). [J51a,l] 

The sixth of Joseph Delorme's pensees assembles a number of examples and 
prefigurations of the modern alexandrine, from Rotrou, Chenier, Lamartine, 
Hugo, and Vigny. It notes that they are all informed by "the full, the large, the 
copious." Typical is this verse by Rotrou: "I myself have seen them — [the Chris- 
tians] looking so serene — / Driving their hymns to the skies in bulls of bronze" 
(p. 154). [J51a,2] 

"The poetry of Andre Chenier ... is, as it were, the landscape for which La- 
martine has done the sky." Delorme, vol. 1, pp. 159-160 ("Pensees," no. 8). 


In the preface of February 1829, Sainte-Beuve provides the poetry of Joseph 
Delorme with a more or less exact social index. He lays weight on the fact that 
Delorme comes from a good family, and even more on his poverty and the 
humiliations to which it has exposed him. [J51a,4] 

What I propose is to show how Baudelaire lies embedded in the nineteenth 
century. Trie imprint he has left behind there must stand out clear and intact, like 
that of a stone which, having lain in the ground for decades, is one day rolled 
from its place. [J51a,5] 

Hie unique importance of Baudelaire resides in his being the first and the most 
unflinching to have taken the measure of the self -estranged human being, in the 
double sense of acknowledging this being and fortifying it with armor against the 
reified world. 272 tJ51a,6] 

Nothing comes closer to the task of the ancient hero in Baudelaire's sense — and 
in his century — than to give a form to modernity. [ J51a,7] 

In the "Salon de 1846" {Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 134), Baudelaire has described his 
social class through the clothes they wear. From this description it emerges that 
heroism is a quality of the one who describes, and not at all a quality of his 
subject. The "heroism of modern life" is a subterfuge or, if you prefer, a euphe- 
mism. The idea of death, from which Baudelaire never broke loose, is the hollow 
matrix readied for a knowledge that was not his. Baudelaire's concept of heroic 
modernity, it would seem, was first of all this : a monstrous provocation. Analogy 
with Daumier. [ J 5 2 , 1 ] 

Baudelaire's truest posture is ultimately not that of Hercules at rest but that of the 
mime who has taken off his makeup. This gestus is found again in the "ebbings" 
of his prosodic construction — something that, for several commentators, is the 
most precious element of his ars poetica. [ J52,2] 

January 15, 1866, on he Spleen de Paris: "Finally, I am hopeful that one of these 
clays I'll he able to show a new Joseph Delorme linking his rhapsodic meditation to 
every chance event in his flanerie." Ch<arles> B<audelaire>, Lettres (Paris, 1915), 
p. 493. 2 " 3 [J52.3] 

January 15, 1866, to Sainte-Beuve: "In certain places in Joseph Delorme I find a 
few too many lutes, lyres, harps, and Jehovahs. This clashes with the Parisian 
poems. Moreover, you'd come with the aim of destroying all that." Ch. B., Lettres 
(Paris, 1915), p. 495."'» [J52,4] 

An image that Baudelaire summons to explain his theory of the short poem, 
particularly the sonnet, in a letter to Armand Fraisse of February 19, 1860, serves 
better than any other description to suggest the way the sky looks in Meryon: 
"Have you ever noticed that a section of the sky seen through a vent or between 
two chimneys or two rocks, or through an arcade, gives a more profound idea of 
the infinite than a great panorama seen from a mountaintop?" Ch. B., Lettres 
(Paris, 1915), pp. 238-239. 275 [J52.5] 

Apropos of Pinelli, in "Quelques caricaturistes etrangers": "I wish that someone 
would invent a neologism, that someone would manufacture a word destined to 
destroy once and for all this species ofponcif — the poncif in conduct and behavior, 

which creeps into the life of artists as into their works." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, 
p. 211.™ [J52.6] 

Baudelaire's use of the concept "allegory" is not always entirely sure: "the . . . 
allegory of the spider weaving her web between the arm and the line of a fisher- 
man, whose impatience never causes him to stir." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 204 
("Quelques caricaturistes etrangers"). 277 [J52a,l] 

Against the proposition "The genius makes his way." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, 
p. 203 ("Quelques caricaturistes etrangers"). [J52a,2] 

About Gavarni: "Like all men of letters — being a man of letters himself — he is 
slightly tainted with corruption." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 199 ("Quelques cari- 
caturistes francais"). 27 " [J52a,3] 

In "Quelques caricaturistes fran§ais," on a drawing by Daumier dealing with 
cholera: "True to its ironic custom in times of great calamity and political up- 
heaval, the sky of Paris is superb; it is quite white and incandescent with heat. . . . 
The square is deserted and like an oven — more desolate, even, than a populous 
square after a riot." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 193. 279 [J52a,4] 

In Le Globe of March 15, 1830, Duvergier de Hauranne writes of Les Consola- 
tions: "It is not at all certain that the Posillipo has not inspired M. Sainte-Beuve as 
much as his Boulevard d'Enf er" (<cited in Sainte-Beuve, Les Consolations [Paris, 
1863],> p. 114). [J52a,5] 

Critique of Joseph Delorme and Les Consolations by Farcy, a July insurgent who 
fell in battle shortly after composing these lines: "Lihertinism is poetic when it is a 
transport of impassioned principle in us, when it is audacious philosophy, but not 
when it is merely a furtive aberration, a shameful confession. This state of mind 
... ill accords . . . with the poet, who should always go along unaffected, with head 
held high, and who requires enthusiasm, or the bitter depths of passion." From 
the manuscript published by C. A. Sainte-Beuve in Les Consolations: Pensees 
d'aoilt (Paris, 1863), p. 125. [J52a,6] 

From the critique of Sainte-Beuve by Farcy: "If the crowd is intolerable to him, 
the vastness of space oppresses him even more, a situation that is less poetic. He 
has not shown the pride or the range to take command of all this nature, to listen 
to it, understand it, and render its grand spectacles." "He was right," comments 
Sainte-Beuve (p. 126). C. A. Sainte-Beuve, Les Consolations: Pensees d'aout 
[Poesies de Sainte-Beuve, part 2] (Paris, 1863), p. 125. [ J52a,7] 

Baudelaire's oeuvre has perhaps gained importance — moral as well as literary — 
through the fact that he left no novel. [ J52a,8] 

The mental capacities that matter in Baudelaire are "souvenirs" of the human 
being, somewhat the way medieval allegories are souvenirs of the gods. "Baude- 
laire," Claudel once wrote, "takes as his subject the only inner experience left to 
people of the nineteenth century — namely, remorse." Now, this very likely paints 
too rosy a picture: remorse was no less past its time than other inner experiences 
formerly canonized. Remorse in Baudelaire is merely a souvenir, like repentance, 
virtue, hope, and even anguish, which was overtaken the moment it relinquished 
its place to morne incuriosite <glum indifference)." 280 [J53.1] 

As Baudelaire, after 1850, took up the doctrine of I'art pour I'art, he explicitly 
carried through a renunciation which he had undertaken in sovereign spirit at the 
very instant he made allegory into the armature of his poetry: he gave up using 
art as category of the totality of existence. [ J53.2] 

The brooder, whose startled gaze falls on the fragment in his hand, becomes an 
allegorist. [J53.3] 

If we call to mind just how much Baudelaire as a poet had to respect his own 
precepts, his own insights, his own taboos, and how strictly circumscribed, on the 
other hand, the tasks of his poetic labor were, then we may come to see in him a 
heroic trait. There is no other book of poems in which the poet as such presents 
himself with so little vanity and so much force. This fact provides a basis for the 
frequent comparison with Dante. [ J53,4] 

What proved so fascinating to Baudelaire in late Latin literature, particularly in 
Lucan, may have been the use this literature made of the names of gods — a 
practice in which it prepared the way for allegory. Usener discusses this. 281 


Scenes of horror in Lucan: the Thessalian witch Erichtho, and the profanation of 
the dead (<Bellum civile,> book 5, lines 507-569); the desecration of the head of 
Pompey (hook 8, lines 663-691); Medusa (book 9, lines 624-653). [J53.6] 

"Le Coucher d u soleil romantique" 282 — landscape a s allegory. [ J 5 3 , 7 ] 

Antiquity and Christianity together determine the historical armature of the 
allegorical mode of perception; they provide the lasting rudiments of the first 
allegorical experience — that of the High Middle Ages. "The allegorical outlook 
has its origin in the conflict between the guilt-laden physis, held up as an example 
by Christianity, and a purer natura deorum [nature of the gods], embodied in the 
Pantheon. With the revival of paganism in the Renaissance, and of Christianity 
in the Counter-Reformation, allegory, the form of their conflict, also had to be 
renewed" (< Walter Benjamin,> Ursprung des deutschen Trauerspiels [Berlin, 1928], 
p. 226). 283 In Baudelaire's case, the matter is clarified if we reverse the formula. 
The allegorical experience was primary for him; one can say that he appropri- 

ated from the antique world, as from the Christian, no more dian he needed to 
set going in his poetry that primordial experience — which had a substrate en- 
tirely sui generis. [J53a,l] 

The passion for ships and for self-propelled toys is, widi Baudelaire, perhaps only 
another expression of the discredit into which, in his view, the world of the 
organic has fallen. A sadistic inspiration is palpable here. [J53a,2] 

"All the miscreants of melodrama — accursed, damned, and fatally marked with a 
grin which runs from ear to ear — are in the pure orthodoxy of laughter. . . . 
Laughter is satanic; it is thus profoundly human." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 171 
("De l'Essence du rire"). 2 '" [ J53a,3] 

It is a shock that brings someone engrossed in reverie up from the depths. 
Medieval legends invoke the state of shock peculiar to the researcher whose 
longing for more-than-human wisdom has led him to magic; the experience of 
shock is cited here as the "derisive laughter of hell." "Here . . . the muteness of 
matter is overcome. In laughter, above all, matter takes on an abundance of spirit, 
in highly eccentric disguise. Indeed, it becomes so spiritual that it far outstrips 
language. Aiming still higher, it ends in shrill laughter" {Ursprung des deutschen 
Trauerspiels, p. 227). 283 Not only was such strident laughter characteristic of 
Baudelaire; it reechoed in his ear and gave him much to think about. [J53a,4] 

Laughter is shattered articulation. [ J 5 4 , 1 ] 

On the flight of images and the theory of surprise, which Baudelaire shared with 
Poe: "Allegories become dated because it is part of their nature to shock." 280 The 
succession of allegorical publications in the Baroque represents a sort of flight of 
images. [J54,2] 

On petrified unrest and the flight of images: "The same tendency is characteristic 
of Baroque lyric. The poems have 'no forward movement, but they swell up from 
within.' If it is to hold its own against the tendency toward absorption, the 
allegorical must constantly unfold in new and surprising ways." Ursprung, p. 182 
(citing Fritz Strich) , 287 [ J54,3] 

Once the scheme of allegory has been metaphysically determined according to its 
threefold illusionary nature, as "illusion of freedom — in the exploration of what is 
forbidden; . . . illusion of independence — in the secession from the community of 
the pious; . . . illusion of infinity — in the empty abyss of evil" {Ursprung, p. 230), 288 
then nothing is easier than to assimilate whole groups of Baudelairean poems to 
diis design. The first part can be represented by the cycle "Fleurs du mal"; the 
second part, by the cycle "Revoke"; while the third could be elaborated without 
difficulty from "Spleen et ideal." [ J54,4] 

The image of petrified unrest, in the Baroque, is "the bleak confusion of Gol- 
gotha, which can be recognized as the schema underlying the allegorical figures 
in hundreds of the engravings and descriptions of the period" {Ur sprung, 
p. 232). 289 ' ' ' ' [J54.5] 

The extent of Baudelaire's impatience can be gauged from these lines in "Sonnet 
d'automne" : "My heart, on which everything jars / except the candor of the 
primitive animal." 290 [J54.6] 

Experiences emptied ont and deprived of their substance: "Last ... we / [of the] 
Muse's priesthood . . . I have drunk without thirst and eaten without hunger!" 
("L'Examen de minuit"). 291 [J54,7] 

Art appears truly bare and austere in the light of an allegorical consideration 1 . 
And on that last and terrible day, 

To escape the vengeance from above, 

He must show barns whose uttermost 

Recesses swell with ripened grain, 

And blooms whose shapes and hues will gain 

The suffrage of the Heavenly Host. 292 

"La Rancon." Compare "Le Squelette laboureur." [J54.8] 

Concerning the "strange sectioning of time," the final stanza of "L'Avertisseur": 

Despite what he may hope or plan, 
There is no moment lef t when man 
Is not subject to the constant 
Warnings of this odious Serpent. 293 

To be compared with "L'Horloge" and "Reve parisien." [J54a,l] 

About laughter: "Beguiled by ghostly laughter in the air / his reason falters, 
grasps at phantom straws." ("Sur Le Tasse en prison d'Eugene Delacroix.") 

His mirth is the reverse of Melmoth's sneer 
Or the snickering of Mephistopheles, 
licked by the lurid light of a Fury's torch 
that burns them to a crisp but leaves us cold. 

"Vers pour le portrait de M. Honore Daumier." 29 ' [J54a,2] 

The derisive laughter from the clouds in "La Beatrice." 

For I — am I not a dissonance 
in the divine accord, 

because of the greedy Irony 
which infiltrates my soul? 

"L'Heautontimoroumenos.' ,2<):> [J54a,3] 

"La Beaute" 256 — entails petrifaction, but not the unrest on which the gaze of the 
allegorist falls. [J54a,4] 

On the fetish: 

Precious minerals form her polished eyes, 
and in her strange symbolic nature where 
angel and sphinx unite, where diamond, 

gold, and steel dissolve into one light, 
shines forever, useless as a star, 
the sterile woman's icy majesty. 

"Avec ses vetements . . . " 2,J7 [J54a,5] 

"For hours? Forever! Into that splendid mane / let me braid rubies, ropes of 
pearls to bind / you indissolubly to my desire." ("La Chevelure.") 2 ' 8 [J54a,6] 

When he went to meet the consumptive Negress who lived in the city, Baudelaire 
saw a much truer aspect of the French colonial empire than did Dumas when he 
took a boat to Tunis on commission from Salvandy. [J54a,7] 

Society of the Second Empire: 

Victims in tears, the hangman glorified; 
the banquet seasoned and festooned with blood: 
the poison of power clogs the despot's veins, 
and the people kiss the knout that scourges them. 

"Le Voyage. " 2OT [J55,l] 

The clouds: "Le Voyage," section 4., stanza 3. [J55,2] 

Autumnal motif: "L'Ennemi," "L'Imprevu," "Semper Eadem." [ J55,3] 

Satan in "Les Litanies de Satan": "great king of subterranean things" — "You 
whose bright eye knows the deep arsenals / Where the huried race of metals slum- 
bers. " 300 [J55.4] 

Granier de Cassagnac's theory of the subhuman, with regard to "Abel et Cain." 


On the Christian determination of allegory: it has no place in the cycle 
"Revoke." [J55.6] 

On allegory: "L' Amour et le crane: Vieux Cul-de-lampe," "Allegorie," "Une Gra- 
vure fantastique." [J55.7] 

. . . The sky was suave, the sea serene; for me 
from now on everything was hloody and hlack 
— the worse for me — and as if in a shroud 
my heart lay buried in this allegory. 

"Un Voyage a Cythere." 3 " 1 [ J55.8] 

"Steeling my nerves to play a hero's part" ("Les Sept Vieillards"). 3112 [J55.9] 
"Les Sept Vieillards" on the subject of eternal sameness. Chorus girls. 


List of allegories: Art, Love, Pleasure, Repentance, Ennui, Destruction, the Now, 
Time, Death, Fear, Sorrow, Evil, Truth, Hope, Vengeance, Hate, Respect, Jeal- 
ousy, Thoughts. [J55.ll] 

"L' Irremediable" — catalogue of emblems. [J55,12] 

The allegories stand for that which the commodity makes of the experiences 
people have in this century. [ J55.13] 

The wish to sleep. "I hate all passion, and wit grates on me" ("Sonnet 
d'automne"). ;i0:! [J55,14] 

"A sinuous fleece ... I . . . which in darkness rivals you, 0 Night, / deep and 
spreading starless Night!" ("Les Promesses d'un visage"). m [J55,15] 

"The dizzying stairs that swallow up his soul" ("Sur Le Tasse en prison d'Eugene 
Delacroix").* 05 [J55.16] 

The affinity Baudelaire felt for late Latin literature is probably connected with his 
passion for the allegorical art that had its first flowering in the High Middle Ages. 


To attempt to judge Baudelaire's intellectual powers on the basis of his philo- 
sophical digressions, as Jules Lemaitre has done, 306 is ill-advised. Baudelaire was a 
bad philosopher, a better theorist in matters of art; but only as a brooder was he 
incomparable. He has the stereotypy in motif characteristic of the brooder, the 
imperturbability in warding off disturbance, the readiness each time to put the 
image at the beck and call of the thought. The brooder is at home among 
allegories. [J55a,l] 

The attraction which a few basic situations continually exerted on Baudelaire 
belongs to the complex of symptoms associated with melancholy. He appears to 

have been under the compulsion of returning at least once to each of his main 
motifs. [J55a,2] 

Baudelaire's allegory bears traces of the violence that was necessary to demolish 
the harmonious f acade of the world that surrounded him. [ J55a,3] 

In Blanqui's view of the world, petrified unrest becomes the status of the cosmos 
itself. The course of the world appears, accordingly, as one great allegory. 


Petrified unrest is, moreover, the formula for Baudelaire's life history, which 
knows no development. [J55a,5] 

The state of tension subsisting between the most cultivated sensibility and the 
most intense contemplation is a mark of the Baudelairean. It is reflected theoreti- 
cally in the doctrine of correspondences and in the predilection for allegory. 
Baudelaire never attempted to establish any sort of relations between these. 
Nevertheless, such relations exist. [J55a,6] 

Misery and terror — which, in Baudelaire, have their armature in allegorical per- 
ception — have become, in Rollinat, the object of a genre. (This genre had its 
"artistic headquarters" at Le Chat Noir cafe. Its model, if you will, may be found 
in a poem like "Le Vin de l'assassin." Rollinat was one of the house poets at Le 
Chat Noir.) [ J55a,7] 

"De l'Essence du rire" contains the theory of satanic laughter, hi this essay, 
Baudelaire goes so far as to adjudge even smiling as fundamentally satanic. 
Contemporaries testified to something frightful in his own maimer of laughing. 


That which the allegorical intention has ixed upon is sundered from the custom- 
ary contexts of life: it is at once shattered and preserved. Allegory holds fast to 
the ruins. Baudelaire's destructive impulse is nowhere concerned with the aboli- 
tion of what falls to it. (But compare "Revolte,"J55,<6>.) [J56,l] 

Baroque allegory sees the corpse only from the outside; Baudelaire evokes it 
from within. [ J56.2] 

Baudelaire's invectives against mythology recall those of the medieval clerics. He 
especially detests chubby-cheeked Cupid. His aversion to this figure has the same 
roots as his hatred for Beranger. [J56,3] 

Baudelaire regards art's workshop in itself [as a site of confusion,] as the "appara- 
tus of destruction" which the allegories so often represent. In the notes he left for 
a preface to a projected third edition of Les Fleurs du mal, he writes: "Do we show 

the public . . . the mechanism behind our effects? . . . Do we display all the rags, 
the paint, the pulleys, the chains, the alterations, the scribbled-over proof sheets — 
in short, all the horrors that make up the sanctuary of art?" Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 
l,p.582. M7 ' [J56.4] 

Baudelaire as mime: "Being as chaste as paper, as sober as water, as devout as a 
woman at Holy Communion, as harmless as a sacrificial lamb, I would not he 
displeased to be taken for a lecher, a drunkard, an infidel, a murderer." Ch. B., 
Oeuvres, vol. 1, p. 582 (Studies for a preface to Les Fleurs du mal). m [J56,5] 

Solely for the publication of Les Fleurs du mul and Petits Poemes en prose, Bau- 
delaire sent notices to more than twenty-five periodicals, not counting the news- 
papers. [J56,6] 

Baroque detailing of the female body: "Le Beau Navire" <The Fine Ship). To the 
contrary: "Tout entiere" <Altogether>. [ J56,7] 


That it's foolish to build anything on human hearts — 
For everything cracks, yes, even love and beauty, 
Till Oblivion flings them into its hod 
And gives them over to Eternity! 

in his "Confession." 31 "' 


Fetish: "who now, from Pit to Empyrean scorned / by all hut me .../.../ my 
jet-eyed statue, angel with hrazen brows!" ("Je te donne ces vers.") 310 [J56,9] 

"Michelangelo / No man's land where every Hercules / becomes a Christ." ("Les 
Phares.")'" [J56a,l] 

"An echo repeated by a thousand labyrinths." ("Les Phares.")' 12 [J56a,2] 

"La Muse venal" shows to what degree Baudelaire occasionally saw the publica- 
tion of poems as a form of prostitution. [J56a,3] 

'"Your Christian bloodstream coursing strong / and steadfast as the copious Clas- 
sical vein." ("La Muse malade.") 3 " [J56a,4] 

In Baudelaire's case, the really decisive indication of class betrayal is not the 
integrity which forbade his applying for a govermnent grant but the incompati- 
bility he felt with the ethos of journalism. [ J56a,5] 

Allegory views existence, as it does art, under the sign of fragmentation and ruin. 
Hart pour I'art erects the kingdom of art outside profane existence. Common to 
both is the renunciation of the idea of harmonious totality in which — according 

to the doctrine of German Idealism no less than that of French eclecticism — art 
and profane existence are merged. [J56a,6] 

The portrayal of the crowd in Poe shows that the description of confusion is not 
the same as a confused description. [J56a,7] 

Rowers adorn the individual stations of this Calvary [of male sexuality]. They 
are flowers of evil. [J56a,8] 

Lcs Flairs Jii mnl is the last book of poems to have had a European-wide rever- 
beration. Before that: Ossian, and Heine's Buch der Lietler <Book of Songs>. 


The dialectic of commodity production in advanced capitalism: the novelty of 
products — as a stimulus to demand — is accorded an unprecedented importance. 
At the same time, the eversame is manifest in mass production. 


In Blanqui's cosmology, everything hinges on the stars, which Baudelaire ban- 
ishes from his world. [J56a,ll] 

The renunciation of the magic of distance is a decisive moment in the lyric poetry 
of Baudelaire. It has found its sovereign formulation in the first stanza of "Le 
Voyage." [J56a,12] 

It belongs to the Via Dolorosa of male sexuality that Baudelaire perceived preg- 
nancy, in some degree, as unfair competition. On the other hand, solidarity 
between impotence and sterility. [ J57.1] 

The passage in which Baudelaire speaks of his fascination with painted theatrical 
backdrops— Where? Q4a,4. [J57.2] 

Baudelaire's destructive impulse is nowhere concerned with the abolition of what 
falls to it. This is reflected in his allegory and is the condition of its regressive 
tendency. On the other hand, allegory has to do, precisely in its destructive furor, 
with dispelling the illusion that proceeds from all "given order," whether of art or 
of life: the illusion of totality or of organic wholeness which transfigures that 
order and makes it seem endurable. And this is the progressive tendency of 
allegory. [J57.3] 

Whenever humanity — aspiring af ter a purer, more innocent, more spiritual exist- 
ence than it has been granted — looked around for a token and pledge of this 
existence in nature, it generally found it in the plant or animal kingdom. Not so 
Baudelaire. His dream of such an existence disdains community with any terres- 
trial nature and holds to the clouds. Many of his poems contain cloud motifs [not 

to mention the transfiguration of Paris in "Paysage" <Landscape>]. What is most 
appalling is the defilement of the clouds ("La Beatrice"). [J57.4] 

From the perspective of spleen, the buried man is the "transcendental subject of 
history." 311 [J57,5] 

Baudelaire's financial misery is a moment of his personal Golgotha. It has Gar- 
nished, together with his erotic misery, the defining features of the image of the 
poet handed down by tradition. The Passion of Baudelaire: understood as a 
redemption. [J57.6] 

Let us emphasize the solitude of Baudelaire as a counterpart to that of Blanqui. 
The latter, too, had a "destiny eternally solitary" ("Mon Coeur mis a nu," no. 
12). su ' ' [J57,7] 

On the image of the crowd in Poe: How well can the image of the big city turn 
out when the register of its physical dangers — to say nothing of the danger to 
which it itself is exposed — is as incomplete as it is at the time of Poe or Baudelaire? 
In the crowd, we see a presentiment of these dangers. [J57.8] 

Baudelaire's readers are men. It is men who have made him famous; it is them he 
has redeemed. 11 " [J57.9] 

Baudelaire would never have written poems, if he had had merely the motives 
for doing so that poets usually have. [J57a,l] 

On impotence. Baudelaire is a "maniac, in revolt against his own impotence." 
Incapable of satisfying the sexual needs of a woman, he made a virtue of neces- 
sity in sabotaging the spiritual needs of his contemporaries. He himself did not 
fail to notice the connection, and his consciousness of this connection is seen 
most clearly in bis style of humor. It is the cheerless humor of the rebel, not for a 
moment to be confused with the geniality of scoundrels, which at that time was 
already on the rise. This type of reaction is something very French; its name, la 
rogne, is not easily rendered into other languages. 317 [J57a,2] 

It is in its transitoriness that modernity shows itself to be ultimately and most 
intimately akin to antiquity. The uninterrupted resonance which Les Flairs du 
mal has found up through the present day is linked to a certain aspect of the 
urban scene, one that came to light only with the city's entry into poetry. It is the 
aspect least of all expected. What makes itself felt through the evocation of Paris 
in Baudelaire's verse is the infirmity and decrepitude of a great city. Nowhere, 
perhaps, has this been given more perfect expression than in the poem "Crepus- 
cule du matin," which is the awakening sob of the sleeper, reproduced in the 
materials of urban life. This aspect, however, is more or less common to the 
whole cycle of "Tableaux parisiens;" it is present in the transparence of the city, as 

conjured by "Le Soleil," no less than in the allegorical evocation of the Louvre in 
"Le Cygne." [J57a,3] 

On the physiognomy of Baudelaire as that of the mime: Courbet reports that he 
looked different every day. [J57a,4] 

With the inhabitants of Romance-language nations, a refinement of the sen- 
sorium does not diminish the power of sensuous apprehension. With the Ger- 
mans, on the other hand, the refinement, the advancing cultivation of sensuous 
enjoyment is generally purchased with a decline in the art of apprehension; here, 
the capacity for pleasure loses in concentration what it gains in delicacy. (Com- 
pare the "reek of wine-casks" 318 in "Le Vm des chiffonniers.") [J57a,5] 

The eminent aptitude for pleasure on the part of a Baudelaire has nothing at all 
to do with any sort of coziness. The fundamental incompatibility of sensuous 
pleasure with what is called Gemiitlichkeit is the mark of an authentic culture of 
the senses. Baudelaire's snobbism is the eccentric repudiation of complacency, 
and his satanism is the readiness to subvert this habit of mind wherever and 
whenever it should arise. [ J 58, 1] 

The streets of Paris, in Meryon's rendering, are chasms, high above which float 
the clouds. [ J58.2] 

Baudelaire wanted to make room for his poems, and to this end he had to push 
aside others. He managed to devalue certain poetic liberties of the Romantics 
through his classical deployment of rhyme, as he devalued the traditional alexan- 
drine through his introduction of certain ebbings and points of rupture. In short, 
bis poems contained special provisions for the elimination of competitors. 


Baudelaire was perhaps the first to have had the idea of a market-oriented origi- 
nality, which just for that reason was more original in its day than any other. The 
creation of his poncif :m led him to adopt methods that were the stock in trade of 
the competition. His defamatory remarks about Musset or Beranger have just as 
much to do with this as his imitations of Victor Hugo. [ J58,4] 

The relation of the crowd to the individual comes, practically of itself, to unfold 
as a metaphor in which the differing inspirations of these two poets — Hugo and 
Baudelaire — can be grasped. Words, like images, present themselves to Hugo as 
a surging, relentless mass. With Baudelaire, in contrast, they take the side of the 
solitary who, to be sure, fades into the multitude, but not before appearing with 
singular physiognomy to one who allows her gaze to linger. [ J58,5] 

What good is talk of progress to a world sinking into rigor mortis? Baudelaire 
found the experience of such a world set down with incomparable power in the 

work of Poe, who thus became irreplaceable for him. Poe described the world in 
which Baudelaire's whole poetic enterprise had its prerogative. [J58.6] 

The idea of Baudelaire's aesthetic Passion has given to many parties in the critical 
literature on Baudelaire the character of an image d 'Epinal. These colored prints, 
as is well known, often showed scenes from the lives of saints. [ J58a,l] 

There are weighty historical circumstances making the Golgotha-way of impo- 
tence trod by Baudelaire into one marked out in advance by his society. Only this 
would explain how it was that he drew, as traveling expenses along the way, a 
precious old coin from among the accumulated treasures of this society. It was 
the coin of allegory, with the scythe-wielding skeleton on one side, and, on the 
obverse, the figure of Melancholy plunged in meditation. [ J58a,2] 

That the stars do not appear in Baudelaire is the surest indicator of that tendency 
of his poetry to dissolve illusory appearances. 320 [J58a,3] 

The key to Baudelaire's relationship with Gautier is to be sought in the more or 
less clear awareness of the younger man [?] that even in art his destructive 
impulse encounters no inviolable limit. In fact, such a limit carmot withstand the 
allegorical intention. Moreover, Baudelaire could hardly have written his essay 
on Dupont if the critique of the concept of art entailed by the latter's established 
practice had not corresponded to his own radical critique. In referring to Gautier, 
Baudelaire successfully undertook to cover up these tendencies. [J58a,4] 

In the flaneur, one might say, is reborn the sort of idler that Socrates picked out 
from the Athenian marketplace to be his interlocutor. Only, there is no longer a 
Socrates. And the slave labor that guaranteed him his leisure has likewise ceased 
to exist. [J58a,5] 

Streets of ill repute. Considering the importance of forbidden forms of sexuality 
in Baudelaire's life and work, it is remarkable that the bordello plays no role in 
either his private documents or his work. There is no counterpart, within this 
sphere, to a poem such as "Lejeu." The brothel is named but once: in "Les Deux 
Bonnes Soeurs." [J58a,6] 

For the flaneur, the "crowd" is a veil hiding the "masses." 321 [J59,2] 

That Hugo's poetry takes up the motif of table-turning is perhaps less notewor- 
thy than the fact that it was regularly composed in the presence of such phenom- 
ena. For Hugo in exile, the unfathomable, insistent swarm of the spirit world 
takes the place of the public. [ J59,3] 

The primary interest of allegory is not linguistic but optical. "Images — my great, 
my primitive passion." 322 [J59,4] 

The elaborate theorems with which the principle of "art for art's sake" was 
enunciated by its original proponents, as by subsequent literary history, ulti- 
mately come down to a specific thesis: that sensibility is the true subject of poetry. 
Sensibility is, by its nature, involved in suffering. If it experiences its highest 
concretization, its richest determination, in the sphere of the erotic, then it must 
find its absolute consummation, which coincides with its transfiguration, in the 
Passion. It will define the idea of an "aesthetic Passion." The concept of the 
aesthetic appears here with precisely the signification that Kierkegaard gives it in 
his erotology. [J59.5] 

The poetics of I' art pour I art blends seamlessly into the aesthetic Passion of Les 
Fleurs du mal. [J59.6] 

The "loss of a halo" 323 concerns the poet first of all. He is obliged to exhibit 
himself in his own person on the market. Baudelaire played this role to the hilt. His 
famous mythomania was a publicity stunt. [ J59.7] 

The new dreariness and desolation of Paris, as it is described by Veuillot, comes 
on the scene, together with the dreariness of men's attire, as an essential moment 
in the image of modernity. [J59,8] 

Mystification, with Baudelaire, is an apotropaic magic, similar to the lie among 
prostitutes. [J59.9] 

The commodity form emerges in Baudelaire as the social content of the allegori- 
cal form of perception. Form and content are united in the prostitute, as in their 
synthesis. [J59.10] 

Baudelaire perceived the significance of the mass-produced article as clearly as 
did Balzac. In this, his "Americanism," of which Laforgue speaks, has its firmest 
foundation. He wanted to create a poncif, a cliche. Lemaitre assures him that he 
succeeded. [J59a,l] 

Apropos of Valery's reflections on the situation of Baudelaire. It is important that 
Baudelaire met with competitive relations in the production of poetry. Of course, 
rivalry between poets is as old as the hills. But in the period around 1830, these 
rivalries began to be decided on the open market. It was victory in that fi eld — cind 
not the patronage of the gentry, princes, or the clergy — that was to be won. This 
condition weighed more heavily on the lyric than on other forms of poetry. The 
disorganization of styles and of poetic schools is the complement of that market, 
which reveals itself to the poet as the "public." Baudelaire was not based in any 
style, and he had no school. It was a real discovery for him that he was compet- 
ing against individuals. [J59a,2] 

Les Fleurs du mal may be considered an arsenal. Baudelaire wrote certain of his 
poems in order to destroy others written before him. [ J59a,3] 

No one ever felt less at home in Paris than Baudelaire. Every intimacy with things 
is alien to the allegorical intention. To touch on things means, for it, to violate 
them. To recognize things means, for it, to see through them. Wherever the 
allegorical intention prevails, no habits of any kind can be formed. Hardly has a 
thing been taken up than allegory has dispensed with the situation. Thing and 
situation become obsolete for allegory more quickly than a new pattern for the 
milliner. But to become obsolete means: to grow strange. Spleen lays down 
centuries between the present moment and the one just lived. It is spleen that 
tirelessly generates "antiquity." And in fact, with Baudelaire, modernity is noth- 
ing other than the "newest antiquity." Modernity, for Baudelaire, is not solely 
and not primarily the object of his sensibility; it is the object of a conquest. 
Modernity has, for its armature, the allegorical mode of vision. [J59a,4] 

The correspondence between antiquity and modernity is the sole constructive 
conception of history in Baudelaire. With its rigid armature, it excludes every 
dialectical conception. [J59a,5] 

On the phrase, "I have little to do with such things," 324 in the draft of a preface to 
Les Fleurs du mal. Baudelaire, who never founded a family, has given the word 
"familiar" in his poetry an inflection filled with meaning and with promise such 
as it never before possessed. It is like a slow, heavily laden hay wagon in which the 
poet carts to the barn everything which throughout his life he had to renounce. 
Compare "Correspondances," "Bohemiens en voyage," "Obsession." [J60,l] 

The passage "where everything, even horror, turns to magic" 325 could hardly be 
better exemplified than by Poe's description of the crowd. [ J60,2] 

Concerning the opening line from "La Servante au grand coeur": on the words 
"of whom you were so jealous"™ falls an accent that one would not necessarily 
expect. The voice, as it were, draws back from "jealous." Therein lies the frailty 
of this already long-past situation. [ J60,3] 

On "Spleen I": through the word "mortality," the city with its offices and its 
statistical registers lies embedded in spleen, as in a picture puzzle <Vexierbild>. 


The whore is the most precious booty in the triumph of allegory — the life which 
signifies death. This quality is the only thing about her that cannot be bought, 
and for Baudelaire it is the only thing that matters. [ J60,5] 

Around the middle of the century, the conditions of artistic production under- 
went a change. This change consisted in the fact that for the first time the form of 
the commodity imposed itself decisively on the work of art, and the form of the 

masses on its public. Particularly vulnerable to these developments, as can be 
seen now unmistakably in our century, was the lyric. It is the unique distinction 
of Les Fleurs du mal that Baudelaire responded to precisely these altered condi- 
tions with a book of poems. It is the best example of heroic conduct to be found 
in his life. [J60.6] 

The heroic bearing of Baudelaire is akin to that of Nietzsche. Though Baudelaire 
likes to appeal to Catholicism, his historical experience is nonetheless that which 
Nietzsche fixed in the phrase "God is dead." hi Nietzsche's case, this experience 
is projected cosmologically in the thesis that nothing new occurs any more, hi 
Nietzsche, the accent lies on eternal recurrence, which the human being has to 
face with heroic composure. For Baudelaire, it is more a matter of "the new," 
which must be wrested heroically from what is always again the same. [J60.7] 

The historical experiences which Baudelaire was one of the first to undergo (it is 
no accident that he belongs to the generation of Marx, whose principal work 
appeared in the year of his death) have become, in our day, only more wide- 
spread and persistent. The traits displayed by capital in June 1848 have, since 
then, been engraved still more sharply in the ruling classes. And the particular 
difficulties involved in mastering the poetry of Baudelaire are the obverse of the 
ease with which one can give oneself up to it. In a word, there is nothing yet 
obsolete about this poetry. This fact has determined the character of most of the 
books concerned with Baudelaire: they are feuilletons on an expanded scale. 


Particularly toward the end of his life, and in view of the limited success of his 
work, Baudelaire more and more threw himself into the bargain. He flung him- 
self after his work, and thus, to the end, confirmed in his own person what he had 
said about the unavoidable necessity of prostitution for the poet. [J60a,2] 

One encounters an abundance of stereotypes in Baudelaire, as in the Baroque 
poets. [J60a,3] 

For the decline of the aura, one thing within the realm of mass production is of 
overriding importance: the massive reproduction of the image. [J60a,4] 

Impotence is the key figure of Baudelaire's solitude. 327 An abyss divides him from 
his fellow men. It is this abyss of which his poetry speaks. [J60a,5] 

We may assume that the crowd as it appears in Poe, with its abrupt and intermit- 
tent movements, is described quite realistically, hi itself, the description has a 
higher truth. These are less the movements of people going about their business 
than the movements of the machines they operate. With uncanny foresight, Poe 
seems to have modeled the gestures and reactions of the crowd on the rhythm of 
these machines. The flaneur, at any rate, has no part in such behavior. Instead, he 

forms an obstacle in its path. His nonchalance would therefore be nothing other 
than an unconscious protest against the tempo of the production process. (Com- 
pare D2a,l.) [J60a,6] 

Fog appears as a consolation of the solitary man. It fills the abyss surrounding 
him. [J60a,7] 

Baudelaire's candidacy for the Academie was a sociological experiment. [ J 6 1,1] 

Series of types — from the national guardsman Mayeux, through Gavroche, to 
the ragpicker, to Vireloque, to Ratapoil. 32 " [ J 6 1,2] 

Baudelaire's allegorical mode of vision was not understood by any of his contem- 
poraries and was thus, in the end, completely overlooked. [ J61,3] 

Surprising proclamations and mysteiy-mongering, sudden attacks and impene- 
trable irony, belong to the raison d'etat of the Second Empire and were charac- 
teristic of Napoleon III. They are no less characteristic of the theoretical writings 
of Baudelaire. [J61.4] 

The cosmic shudder in Victor Hugo has little in common with the naked terror 
that seized Baudelaire in his spleen. Hugo felt perfectly at home in the world of 
the spirits. It is the complement of his domestic existence, which was itself not 
without horror. [ J61.5] 

The veiled import of the first section of "Chant d'automne": the season is named 
only in the tiny phrase "autumn is here!" 329 and the following line says that, for 
the poet, it has no other meaning than as a foreboding of death. To him, it has 
brought no harvest. [ J 6 1 , 6 ] 

In the guise of a beggar, Baudelaire continually put the model of bourgeois 
society to the test. His willfully induced, if not deliberately maintained, depend- 
ence on his mother not only has a psychoanalytically identifiable cause; it also 
has a social cause. [J61,7] 

The labyrinth is the right path for him who always arrives early enough at his 
destination. For the flaneur, this destination is the marketplace. [J 61, 8] 

The path of one who shrinks from arriving at his goal will easily take the form of 
a labyrinth. [For the flaneur, this goal is the marketplace.] The same holds for the 
social class that does not want to know where it is heading. Moreover, nothing 
prevents it from reveling in this roundahout way and hence substituting the 
shudder of pleasure for the shudder of death. This was the case for the society of 
the Second Empire. [ J 6 1 , 9 ] 

What concerned Baudelaire was not manifest and short-term demand, but latent 
and long-term demand. Les Flews du mal demonstrates not only that he correctly 
assessed such a demand but, in addition, that this sureness in evaluation is 
inseparable f rom his significance asapoet. [ J 6 1 , 1 0 ] 

One of the most powerful attractions of prostitution appears only with the rise of 
the metropolis — namely, its operation in the mass and through the masses. It was 
the existence of the masses that first enabled prostitution to overspread large 
areas of the city, whereas earlier it had been confined, if not to houses, at least to 
the streets. The masses first made it possible for the sexual object to be reflected 
simultaneously in a hundred different forms of allurement — forms which the 
object itself produced. Beyond this, salability itself can become a sexual stimulus; 
and this attraction increases wherever an abundant supply of women under- 
scores their character as commodity. With the exhibition of girls ;!:(0 in rigidly 
uniform dress at a later period, the music hall review explicitly introduced the 
mass-produced article into the libidinal life of the big-city dweller. [ J61a,l] 

As a matter of fact, if the rule of the bourgeoisie were one day to be stabilized 
(which never before has happened, and never can), then the vicissitudes of 
history would in actuality have no more claim on the attention of thinkers than a 
child's kaleidoscope, which with every turn of the hand dissolves the established 
order into a new array. As a matter of fact, the concepts of the ruling class have in 
every age been the mirrors that enabled an image of "order" to prevail. [ J61a,2] 

In L'Eternite par les astres, Blanqui displayed no antipathy to the belief in prog- 
ress; between the lines, however, he heaped scorn on the idea. One should not 
necessarily conclude from this that he was untrue to his political credo. The 
activity of a professional revolutionary such as Blanqui does not presuppose any 
faith in progress; it presupposes only the determination to do away with present 
injustice. The irreplaceable political value of class hatred consists precisely in its 
affording the revolutionary class a healthy indifference toward speculations con- 
cerning progress. Indeed, it is just as worthy of humane ends to rise up out of 
indignation at prevailing injustice as to seek through revolution to better the 
existence of future generations. It is just as worthy of the human being; it is also 
more like the human being. Hand in hand with such indignation goes the firm 
resolve to snatch humanity at the last moment from the catastrophe looming at 
every turn. That was the case with Blanqui. He always refused to develop plans 
for what comes "later." [J61a,3] 

Baudelaire was obliged to lay claim to the dignity of the poet in a society that had 
no more dignity of any kind to confer. Hence the bouffonnerie of his public 
appearances. [ J62,l] 

The figure of Baudelaire has passed into his fame. For the petty-bourgeois mass 
of readers, his story is an image d'Epinal, an illustrated "life history of a libertine." 

This image has contributed greatly to Baudelaire's reputation — little though its 
purveyors may have numbered among his friends. Over this image another 
imposes itself, one that has had a less widespread but more lasting effect: it shows 
Baudelaire as exemplar of an aesthetic Passion. [J62,2] 

The aesthete in Kierkegaard is predestined to the Passion. See "The Unhappiest 
Man" in Eilha/Q: [ J62.3] 

The grave as the secret chamber in which Eros and Sexus settle their ancient 
quarrel. [J62.4] 

The stars in Baudelaire represent a picture puzzle <\hderbiltb of the commodity. 
They are the eversame in great masses. [J62,5] 

Baudelaire did not have the humanitaiian idealism of a Victor Hugo or a La- 
martine. The emotional buoyancy of a Musset was not at his disposal. He did 
not, like Gautier, take pleasure in his times, nor could he deceive himself about 
them like Leconte de Lisle. It was not given him to find a ref uge in devotions, like 
Verlaine, nor to heighten the youthful vigor of his lyric elan through the betrayal 
of his adulthood, like Rimbaud. As rich as Baudelaire is in knowledge of his craft, 
he is relatively unprovided with stratagems to face the times. And even the grand 
tragic part he had composed for the arena of his day — the role of the "mod- 
ern" — could be filled in the end only by himself. All this Baudelaire no doubt 
recognized. The eccentricities in which he took such pleasure were those of the 
mime who has to perform before a public incapable of following the action on the 
stage — a mime, furthermore, who knows this about his audience and, in his 
performance, allows that knowledge its rightful due. [J62,6] 

In the psychic economy, the mass-produced article appears as obsessional idea. [It 
answers to no natural need.] The neurotic is compelled to channel it violently 
among the ideas within the natural circulation process. [J62a,l] 

The idea of eternal recurrence transforms the historical event itself into a mass- 
produced article. But this conception also displays, in another respect — on its 
obverse side, one could say — a trace of the economic circumstances to which it 
owes its sudden topicality. This was manifest at the moment the security of the 
conditions of life was considerably diminished through an accelerated succession 
of crises. The idea of eternal recurrence derived its luster from the fact that it was 
no longer possible, in all circumstances, to expect a recurrence of conditions 
across any interval of time shorter than that provided by eternity. The quotidian 
constellations very gradually began to be less quotidian. Very gradually their 
recurrence became a little less frequent, and there could arise, in consequence, 
the obscure presentiment that henceforth one must rest content with cosmic 
constellations. Habit, in short, made ready to surrender some of its prerogatives. 
Nietzsche says, "I love short-lived habits ," 331 and Baudelaire already, throughout 

his life, was incapable of developing regular habits. Habits are the armature of 
long experience iErfthrunp, whereas they are decomposed by individual experi- 
ences <Erlebnisse>. [J62a,2] 

A paragraph of the "Diapsalmata ad se ipsum" deals with boredom. It closes with 
the sentence: "My soul is like the Dead Sea, over which no bird can fly; when it has 
flown midway, then it sinks down to death and destruction." Soren Kierkegaard, 
Entiveder-Oder (Jena, 1911), vol. 1, p. 33. Compare "I am a graveyard that the 
moon abhors" ("Spleen II"). 332 [J62a,3] 

Melancholy, pride, and images. "Carking care is my feudal castle. It is built like an 
eagle's nest upon the peak of a mountain lost in the clouds. No one can take it by 
storm. From this abode I dart down into the world of reality to seize my prey; hut 
I do not remain down there, I bear my quarry aloft to my stronghold. What I 
capture are images." Soren Kierkegaard, Entiveder-Oder (Jena, 1911), vol. 1, 
p. 38 ("Diapsalmata ad se ipsum"). 333 [J62a,4] 

On the use of the term "aesthetic" in Kierkegaard. In choosing a governess, one 
takes into account "also her aesthetic qualifications for amusing the children." 
Soren Kierkegaard, Entiveder-Oder (Jena, 1911), vol. 1, p. 255 ("The Rotation 
Method"). 33 ' 1 [J63,l] 

Blanqui's journey: "One tires of living in the country, and moves to the city; one 
tires of one's native land, and travels abroad; one is europamiide <tired of 
Europe), and goes to America; and so on. Finally one indulges in a sentimental 
hope of endless journeyings from star to star." Soren Kierkegaard, Entiveder- 
Oder (Jena, 1911), vol. 1, p. 260 ("The Rotation Method"). 1135 [ J63.2] 

Boredom: "it causes a dizziness like that produced hy looking down into a yawning 
chasm, and this dizziness is infinite." Kierkegaard, Entiveder-Oder, vol. 1, p. 260 
("The Rotation Method"). 336 [J63,3] 

On the Passion of the aesthetic man in Kierkegaard and its foundation in memory: 
"Memory is emphatically the real element of the unhappy man. ... If I imagine a 
man who himself had had no childhood, . . . but who now . . . discovered all the 
beauty that there is in childhood, and who would now remember his own child- 
hood, constantly staring back into that emptiness of the past, then I would have an 
excellent illustration of the truly unhappy man. " Soren Kierkegaard, Entiveder- 
Oder (Jena, 1911), vol. 1 pp. 203-204 ("The Unhappiest Man").' 137 [J63.4] 

Baudelaire's desire to write a book in which he would spew his disgust with 
humanity into its face recalls the passage in which Kierkegaard confesses to using 
the either-or as "an interjection" which he would "shout at mankind, just as boys 
shout 'Yah! Yah!' after a Jew." Kierkegaard, Entweder-Oder (Jena, 1913), vol. 2, 

p. 133 ("Equilibrium between the Aesthetical and the Ethical in the Composition 
of Personality"). 338 [J63.5] 

On the "sectioning of time." "This ... is the most adequate expression for the 
aesthetic existence: it is in the moment. Hence the prodigious oscillations to which 
the man who lives aesthetically is exposed." Kierkegaard, Entiveder-Oder, vol. 2, 
p. 196 ("Equilibrium between the Aesthetical and the Ethical in the Composition 
of Personality"). 339 [J63.6] 

On impotence. Around the middle of the century, the bourgeois class ceases to 
be occupied with the future of the productive forces it has unleashed. (Now 
appear those counterparts to the great Utopias of a More or Campanella, who 
had welcomed the accession of this class and affirmed the identity of its interests 
with the demands of freedom and justice — now appear, that is to say, the Utopias 
of a Bellamy or a Moilin, which are mainly concerned with touching up the 
notion of economic consumption and its incentives.) In order to concern itself 
further with the future of the productive forces which it had set going, the 
bourgeoisie would first of all have had to renounce the idea of private income. 
That the habit of "coziness" so typical of bourgeois comfort around midcentury 
goes together with this lassitude of the bourgeois imagination, that it is one with 
the luxury of "never having to think about how the forces of production must 
develop in their hands" — these things admit of very little doubt. The dream of 
having children is merely a beggarly stimulus when it is not imbued with the 
dream of a new nature of things in which these children might one day live, or for 
which they can struggle. Even the dream of a "better humanity" in which our 
children would "have a better life" is only a sentimental fantasy reminiscent of 
Spitzweg when it is not, at bottom, the dream of a better nature in which they 
would live. (Herein lies the inextinguishable claim of the Fourierist Utopia, a 
claim which Marx had recognized [and which Russia had begun to act on].) The 
latter dream is the living source of the biological energy of humanity, whereas the 
former is only the muddy pond from which the stork draws children. Baude- 
laire's desperate thesis concerning children as the creatures closest to original sin 
is not a bad complement to this image. [ J63a,l] 

Re the dances of death: "Modern artists are far too neglectful of those magnificent 
allegories of the Middle Ages." Ch. B., Oeuvres, vol. 2, p. 257 ("Salon de 
1859"). 340 [J63a,2] 

It is impotence that makes for the bitter cup of male sexuality. From this impo- 
tence springs Baudelaire's attachment to the seraphic image of woman, as well as 
his fetishism. It follows that Keller's "sin of the poet" — namely, "to invent sweet 
images of women, / such as bitter earth never harbors" 3 " — is certainly not his. 
Keller's women have the sweetness of chimeras. Baudelaire, in his female figures, 
remains precise, and therefore French, because with him the fetishistic and the 
seraphic elements do not coincide, as they always do in Keller. [ J64,l] 

"Of course, Marx antl Engels ironizecl an absolute idealist faith in progress. 
(Engels commends Fourier for having introduced the future disappearance of 
humanity into his reflections on history, as Kant introduced the future disappear- 
ance of the solar system.) In this connection, Engels also makes fun of 'the talk 
about illimitable human perfectibility.'" 3 ' 12 Letter of (Hermann) Duncker to Grete 
Steffin, July 18, 1938. [J64,2] 

The mythic concept of the task of the poet ought to be defined through the 
profane concept of the instrument. — The great poet never confronts his work 
simply as the producer; he is also, at the same time, its consumer. Naturally, in 
contrast to the public, he consumes it not as entertainment but as tool. This 
instrumental character represents a use value that does not readily enter into the 
exchange value. [J64.3] 

On Baudelaire's "Crepuscule du soir": the big city knows no true evening twi- 
light. In any case, the artificial lighting does away with all transition to night. The 
same state of affairs is responsible for the fact that the stars disappear from the 
sky over the metropolis. Who ever notices when they come out? Kant's tran- 
scription of the sublime through "the starry heavens above me and the moral law 
within me" 3 * 3 could never have been conceived in these terms by an inhabitant of 
the big city. [J64.4] 

Baudelaire's spleen is the suffering entailed by the decline of the aura. "Adorable 
Spring has lost its perfume." 3 " [J64,5] 

Mass production is the principal economic cause — and class warfare the principal 
social cause — of the decline of the aura. [ J64a,l] 

De Maistre on the "savage" — a reflection directed against Rousseau: "One need 
only glance at the savage to see the curse written ... on the external form of his 
body. ... A formidable hand weighing on these doomed races wipes out in them 
the two distinctive characteristics of our grandeur: foresight and perfectibility. 
The savage cuts the tree down to gather the fruit; he unyokes the ox that the 
missionary has just entrusted to him, and cooks it with wood from the plow." 
Joseph de Maistre, Les Soirees de Saint-Peter sbour g, ed. Hattier (Paris <1922>), 
p. 23 (second dialogue). 34 "' [J64a,2] 

The Knight in the third dialogue: "I would very much like, though it cost me 
dearly, to discover a truth capable of shocking the whole human race. I would 
state it plainly to everyone's face." Joseph de Maistre, Les Soirees de Saint-Peter s- 
bourg, ed. Hattier, p. 29. [J64a,3] 

"Beware, ahove all, one very common prejudice . . . — namely, the belief that the 
great reputation of a book presupposes an extensive and reasoned knowledge of 
that hook. Such is not the case, I assure you. The great majority are capable of 

judging solely by the lights of a rather small number of men who first deliver an 
opinion. They pass on, and this opinion survives them. The new hooks arriving on 
the scene leave no time for reading any others; and soon these others are judged 
only according to a vague reputation." Joseph de Maistre, Les Soirees de Saint- 
Petersbourg, ed. Hattier (Paris), p. 44 (sixth dialogue). [J64a,4] 

"The whole earth, continually steeped in hlood, is nothing but an immense altar on 
which every living thing must be sacrificed without end, without restraint, without 
respite, until the consummation of the world, the extinction of evil, the death of 
death." De Maistre, Soirees, ed. Hattier, p. 61 (seventh dialogue: "La Guerre"). 346 


The characters in Les Soirees de Saint-Petersbourg: the Knight has felt the influence 
of Voltaire, and the Senator is a mystic, while the Count expounds the doctrine of 
the author himself. [ J64a,6] 

"But do you realize, gentlemen, the source of this fl ood of insolent doctrines which 
unceremoniously judge God and call him to account for his orders? They come to 
us from that great phalanx we call savants dntellectuals> and whom we have not 
been ahle in this age to keep in their place, whi